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Italy’s Super Tuscan movement was one of true inspiration, born of a frustration with outdated wine laws and the restrictions a fusty old government was imposing on the new generation of talented Tuscan winemakers. The Super Tuscan winemakers believed they could put their beautiful land and flawless terroir to better use, by introducing Bordeaux grape varietals to their vineyards, and by making classic French style blended red wines as well as mixing these grapes with the native Sangiovese grapes which flourish there. The wines were an instant hit, and regenerated the flagging region both at home and in overseas sales. One of the key wineries behind this movement was Tenuta San Guido, which is now approaching its fortieth year at the top of its game, and which is overseen by the tireless and ever-inspired Marchese Nicolo Incisa della Rocchetta.
The estate was started by Nicolo’s father, Mario, who was inspired by the similarity the estate bore to Graves, in Bordeaux. The similarity came from Tenuta San Guido’s gravel based soils (the name Graves comes from the French word for gravel) which adds a specific character and finesse to the grapes which grow so well there. Low yielding vines of exquisite quality, fruit of deep complexity and age-worthiness and plenty of rich tannins and acidity typify the produce coming out of Tenuta San Guido’s vineyards - perfect conditions for the production of Bordeaux style wines.
Mario Incisa della Rocchetta planted his Cabernet Sauvignon vines in 1944, in the gorgeous Bolgheri hills where he bought his vineyards. It took no less than twenty five years of dedication and experimentation before the first great wine of Tenuta San Guido was released - the now famed Sassicaia wines of 1969 - which kickstarted the Super Tuscan movement, and ensured Tenuta San Guido a place in the history books.