By: Jenifer Mangione Voigt
An exclusive series of pairing dinners featuring wines from the historic estates of Marchesi Antinori, one of Italy’s largest wine companies, will begin at Toscana Divino on Friday, July 20, 2018 and happen every evening until Sunday, July 29, 2018.
Why Is the Antinori family revered in the world of wine?
To fully comprehend the longevity and significance of the Antinori family of winemakers just think for a moment about what the City of Florence was like prior to the Renaissance and the erection of Brunelleschi’s famous dome. In fact, the Antinori family traces its winemaking roots back even further, to 1180, when Rinuccio di Antinoro produced wine at Castello di Combiate (shown left) located in the Florentine countryside.
By 1183, after a fire destroyed their castle, the Antinori family moved inside the city where, a little over a century later, in 1308, Dante Alighieri began writing one of Italy’s most cherished works of literature, The Divine Comedy, also establishing the base for the modern Italian language.
However, it was on May 19, 1385 that the Antinori family was officially recognized as winemakers because on this day Giovanni di Piero Antinori joined the Winemakers Guild of Florence, establishing their family as part of the city’s elite, alongside the Medici family. Since that time, members of the family have always led the company, making their current leadership the 26th generation of Antinori winemakers. Though Marquis Piero Antinori, ex-officio president of the company, likes to repeat: “ancient roots play an important role in our work, but have never limited our innovative spirit.”
How have the Antinori family contributed to wine in Italy?
One important contribution is that the Antinori family helps safeguard traditional Italian winemaking as members of the Premium Familiae Vini Foundation, an association of winemaking houses unified beyond geographical boundaries to uphold the principle, “of the ownership of vineyards and the production of wine as a family activity to maintain and refine – just like a great wine – over time.”
By 1970, the Antinori family, at that time led by Piero, had innovated winemaking techniques with the early harvesting of white grapes and by using different types of barrique, stainless steel vats and malolactic fermentation of red wines. By 1971, Piero had created their famed Tignanello, a barrique-aged wine that contained Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc, which meant that it was ineligible for the Chianti Classico appellation but followed Sassicaia to be among the first “Super Tuscans.” Since 1982, Tignanello has been made from 85% Sangiovese, 10% Cabernet Sauvignon and 5% Cabernet Franc.
What Antinori wines will be featured? Which Toscana Divino entrees will they be paired with?
The pairings will be as follows:
- Bolgheri | Tartare di manzo al finocchio (Beef & Fennel Tartare) paired with the Antinori 2017 Scalabrone Rosè, a light-pink-in-color blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah with an intense nose of ripe fruit, cherries and raspberries, along with well-integrated, subtle, and lively hints of herbs. The palate is fresh and balanced with a fruity and persistent aftertaste.
- Montepulciano | Tagliatelle al cinghiale (Wild Boar Tagliatelle) paired with the Antinori 2015 La Braccesca Vino Nobile, a blend of Sangiovese and Merlot with an intense ruby red color that offers fruity aromas with notes of violets and vanilla. The palate is ripe, supple, balanced and with tannins supported by a pleasurable vein of acidity, which brings out the flavors of blackberries and cherries. Persistent and mineral on the finish and aftertaste.
- Montalcino | Controfiletto al vino rosso (Beef Loin in red wine sauce) paired with Antinori 2013 Pian delle Vigne Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, produced from the Sangiovese grape with a delicate nose and complex with notes of ripe fruit, cherries, and plums, perfectly balanced with sensations of dried and candied fruit and spices. The palate is ample with supple tannins and is enlivened by a note of vibrant acidity with fully brings out the intense persistence and pleasure of its aromas. The finish offers hints of tobacco, dark chocolate, and berry fruit.
- Chianti | Cantucci fatti in casa (Homemade almond cookies) paired with Antinori 2012/13 Vin Santo del Chianti Classico – Tenuta Tignanello, a blend prevalently of Trebbiano with a small percentage of Malvasia that is a deep amber in color with golden highlights. This wine shows sweet aromas of walnuts and hazelnuts, chestnuts along with honey with subtle notes of citrus fruit in the background. The flavor is full, honeyed and well-supported by a vigorous and tonic acidity.
What is the cost to attend?
The cost to attend, excluding tax, tip and anything ordered additionally apart from the pairing menu, is $85 and $75 for members of Friends of Toscana, our loyalty dining club. To learn more about the club, including how to join, please visit www.toscanadivino.com.
When is the 2018 Antinori wine seminar, what is the cost and which wines will be featured?
The 2018 Antinori Wine Seminar will be held at Toscana Divino on Saturday, July 21, 2018 and will feature these wines: 1.) Scalabrone 2017 Rosè 2.) La Braccesca 2015 Vino Nobile 3.) Pian delle Vigne 2013 Brunello 4.) Il Bruciato 2015 Supertuscan 5.) Tignanello 2015 Supertuscan and 6.) 2012/13 Vin Santo del Chianti Classico – Tenuta Tignanello. The cost is $35, but complimentary for members of Friends of Toscana.
Are you offering specials for the purchase of Antinori wines?
Yes, from July 20 till July 29, 2018 Toscana Divino will offer special prices on Antinori wines as follows: 1.) TENUTA GUADO AL TASSO, Bolgheri Rosato DOC ‘Scalabrone’ 2017 – 1 case minimum $16.99/bt (AVG national winesearcher $20) 2.) LA BRACCESCA, Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG 2015 – 1 case minimum $19.99 (AVG national winesearcher $24) 3.) PIAN DELLE VIGNE, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG 2013 – 1 case minimum $59.00 (AVG national winesearcher $70) and 4.) TENUTA TIGNANELLO, Vin Santo del Chianti Classico DOCG 2013 – 1 case minimum $28 (AVG national winesearcher $33).
What are the dates for the Antinori dinners and wine seminars for Toscana Divino’s private residences clients?
Wine dinners will be held at Ballerina Bal Harbour on Thursday, July 26th and at Oceana Key Biscayne on Saturday, July 28th. Wine Seminars will be held at Chateau Beach on Wednesday, July 25th and at Ballerina Bal Harbour on Thursday, July 26th. Costs and offerings are the same as those listed above for our restaurant.