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2008 Tua Rita Syrah

2008 Tua Rita Syrah

Critic Reviews

The 2008 Syrah is a big, expressive wine loaded with varietal character. Iron, minerals, bacon fat and blackberries are just some of the nuances that blossom in this striking wine. All of the aromas and flavors build towards the exciting, viscerally thrilling finish. I have said it before, and I will say it again. The Syrah is the most distinctive wine at Tua Rita. This is a great, great bottle. Anticipated maturity: 2018-2028.

This is a fabulous set of wines from Stefano Frascolla and Tua Rita. The 2008s show the real class of the year in Maremma.

Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RP
The 2008 Syrah is a big, expressive wine loaded with varietal character. Iron, minerals, bacon fat and blackberries are just some of the nuances that blossom in this striking wine. All of the aromas and flavors build towards the exciting, viscerally thrilling finish. I have said it before, and I will say it again. The Syrah is the most distinctive wine at Tua Rita. This is a great, great bottle.

Antonio Galloni | 97 AG
Meaty and rich with decadent aromas. Full and juicy with lots of fruit and soft tannins. Black pepper and dark fruits.I like the voluptuous style to this. Why wait? But better in 2013.

James Suckling | 95 JS
This is really delicious, with meat, berry and game aromas and flavors. Full and decadent—just how I like my Syrah. One of the best Syrahs in Tuscany. Best after 2011.

Wine Spectator | 94 WS
Rita’s blockbuster Syrah oozes thick, inky concentration with luscious layers of ripe fruit, blueberry, leather and bitter dark chocolate. You’ll sense cedar wood and licorice as well and the mouthfeel is super soft and smooth. Drink after 2015.

Wine Enthusiast | 93 WE

Wine Details for 2008 Tua Rita Syrah

Type of Wine Super Tuscan/IGT : Many grape varietals are planted all over the world so they're not typical for one single country anymore. For instance, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc form part of many blends coming from different countries. Super Tuscan wines are produced in this Italian region, but grape varietals used in the making are not indigenous - those are mostly Syrah, Merlot, and Cabernet Sauvignon.
Varietal Syrah : Something magical occurred when two ancient French grapes procreated and the varietal of Syrah entered the world of winegrowing. The exact time period of its inception is still undetermined; however, the origin of Syrah’s parentage confirms it was birthed in the Rhone Valley. DNA testing performed by UC Davis has indicated that Syrah is the progeny of the varietals Dureza and Mondeuse Blanche, both of Rhone origin. Syrah dominates its native homeland of Northern Rhone and has become one of the most popular grape varietals in the world.

Syrah, Shiraz and Petite Sirah have often been confused and misunderstood, some consumers believing them to all be the same grape, while others thinking the opposite. Petite Sirah is actually the offspring of Syrah and Peloursin and though related, is an entirely different grape variety. Its official name is Durif, for the name of the French nurseryman who first propagated the varietal in the 1880s; it is called Petite Sirah in California (due to the resemblance of Syrah, but smaller berries). Syrah and Shiraz are the same grape. Producers in Australia have been labelling Syrah as “Shiraz” since James Busby first introduced the varietal to the continent. The Scottish viticulturist brought Syrah from France to Australia in the middle of the 18th century and labelled the cuttings as “Sycras” and “Ciras,” which may have led to the naming. Most California vintners label their bottlings as Syrah and of course in French style and tradition, the name of the village or area the grape is cultivated dictates the label name.

The Syrah grape is at home in Northern Rhone where the climate is cool and the terroir is filled with gravel, schist, limestone, iron, granite and sandy soils. It thrives on rocky, hilly terrain with a southern exposure, due to its need for sunlight. Syrah is a very vigorous grape with a spreading growth habit. The berries are small to medium oval shaped blue-black and tend to shrivel when ripe.

Today, Syrah is one of the most popular and widely planted grape varietals in the world, covering almost 190,000 hectares across the earth’s surface. It is the only red grape variety permitted by AOC regulations in the appellations of Hermitage and Cote-Rotie, where it has breathed life into some of the most tremendous wines on the planet. Languedoc-Roussilon has the most surface area planted in France with 43,200 hectares dedicated to Syrah. The varietal is used for blending in Southern Rhone, Provence and even Bordeaux. Syrah has spread worldwide from Australia to California and South Africa to Spain creating the ‘New World’ hype of the varietal. Since the 1990’s, Syrah winegrowing and production has increased exponentially; for example, in 1958 there were a mere 2,000 hectares planted in France. By 2005 that number increased to over 68,000 hectares and today it is well over 70,000. The same holds true for California, Australia and other ‘New World’ producers that have jumped “all in.” World-wide there are approximately 190,000 hectares of Syrah currently being cultivated.

The allure of Syrah has taken the world by storm, but is important to note where the hype began. Long before Syrah was being stamped with ‘New World’ or of ‘cult status,’ the tremendous quality of Hermitage was being written about in Thomas Jefferson’s diary. Today, the grape variety can be grown, fashioned, named and enjoyed in a myriad of ways, but the quality of Syrah grape remains the same – incredible.

Country Italy : Italy is renowned as one of the world’s greatest gastronomic havens; from certified Prosciutto di Parma to the sea-side seafood eateries on the island of Sicily. However, this epicurean experience could not possibly be as hedonistic without the ethereal combination of the country’s plethora of fine wines. It seems unfair that a nation should be able to boast, both, some of the world’s greatest cuisine as well as its greatest wines. Italian wine is one of the most sought after in the world, and has become the second most produced in the world, behind only France.

Stretching an impressive 736 miles from northern Italy to the peninsula’s southern tip, the country’s geography generates an enormous array of topography, climate and soil structure. This is an extremely important quality of its winegrowing and making industry which lays claim to nearly 550 different grape varietals, which all desire their own necessities, in terms of terroir and climate.

The still red wines of Italy truly characterize the nation’s vast and expansive terroir; Nebbiolo dominates Piedmont, where Barolo and Barbaresco reign king and queen of the region’s production. Hailing from Brunello di Montalcino in Tuscany, the rockstar Sangiovese grape has become synonymous with greatness. Vin Santo sweet wines have taken on a mighty feat of competing with the glorious wines of Sauternes, and of course, Prosecco. Prosecco, located in Trieste (northeast Italy) and its creation of luxuriously effervescent styles of wine has become Italy’s answer to Champagne. The Glera grape variety, which has become synonymous with the name Prosecco, is the main ingredient and is beloved in the appellation where the village of Prosecco’s name has become world renowned.

The blurred boundary between Italy and the countries of Slovenia and Austria, where German influence still resonates through Friuli wines. The prevalence of Riesling and other such grape varietals is high in this region and have become extremely popular on today’s market.

With nearly 702,000 hectares of grapevines covering the massive and diverse landscape, Italy’s annual average of 48.3 million hectoliters of wine production is second only to France in terms of volume and Spain in terms of hectares of vines. The country is vast and overwhelming when it comes to the culinary arts, but perhaps even this is overshadowed by its production of some of the world’s most sought after wines, whether the omnipresent Chianti to the highly collectible and sought after Amarone della Valpolicalla.

Region Tuscany : Italian culture worships the concept of a shared meal, and their wines scream for a chance to be uncorked with your friends and family. The region's Mediterranean climate and hilly landscape combine to create a beautiful viticultural environment, where every chosen grape is brought to its full potential and transmuted into drinks worthy of gods. The vineyards are planted along the higher reaches of the hill slopes, creating a gorgeous view of the Italian landscape.

Once your lips kiss the wine, you're sent spiraling down a veritable whirlpool of pure flavor, touching upon notes of sensuous cherry, nuts, floral hints and undertones of honey and minerals. The wines can be as sweet as a fresh summer romance, and carry an air of dignity and elegance about them that can stimulate your intellect for months as you contemplate the seemingly infinite intricacies and details in the texture. Tuscany is an important part of Italian viticulture, and sampling their wines is the closest you can get to visiting this heavenly region and experiencing the culture.
Subregion Toscana


Producer Tua Rita : In the beginning, their dream was to live a simple lifestyle, farming the Tuscan countryside, in close proximity to nature. But dreams are meant to change with growth and an overwhelming passion for wine would eventually change Virgilio Bisti and Rita Tua’s modest intentions into a globally recognized brand. Their humble two hectare vineyard would become the building block for what is now one of the most recognized estates in the world…Tua Rita.

In its relatively short history, the estate has become a global sensation in the world of wine, achieving critical-acclaim for its wines. In 1984, Rita and Virgilio were in search of a tranquil retreat in which to enjoy retirement and perhaps grow some vines. What ensued was nothing like the quit, leisurely life they planned. Their vineyards had expanded to 9 hectares in less than a decade and by 2000, the estate was earning great praise from wine professionals and critics. Their 1999 Redigaffi was rated a 99 point-score from Robert Parker who stated that it was, “as close to perfection as a wine can get.” The following year, the 2000 vintage Redigaffi was awarded a perfect 100 point-score (by Robert Parker) which was penultimate to the transformation from a “vins de garage” winery into a “Super Tuscan” producer. The last remaining task was to increase and ready their property for the production of their “now” globally celebrated wines. The winemaking facility was extended and redesigned for the production of high profile wines. It has been strictly adapted to the winemaking process of Italian tradition, with minimal human intervention.

Tua Rita is located in Suvereto, in the district of Colline Metallifere (upper Maremma) where they currently cultivate thirty hectares of vines. The property rests on gently sloping hillsides where the soil has a substantial amount of pebbles and stones, clay, silt, sand and crucially important mineral trace elements including zinc. This spectacular terroir is cared for with rigorous and passionate determination. Varietals are expertly cultivated in the most suitable vineyard sites according to variety. Their beloved Merlot is planted mid slope, in markedly clayey soils with fairly significant pebble fraction. Cabernet Sauvignon is planted in soils with heavier amounts of gravel. The vineyards harvest a plethora of other varietals, including Syrah, Sangiovese, Cabernet Franc, Trebbiano, Riesling and Chardonnay to name a “few”.

These varietals are used in the production of their award-winning wines, including their flagship Redigaffi (100% Merlot) Guisto di Notri, Perlato del Bosco, Rossi di Notri and the whites of Lodano Bianco and Perlato del Bosco Bianco (among others). Tua Rita’s portfolio has expanded over the years, achieving much favorable press; however, Redigaffi and Guisto di Notri have garnered the greatest attention. They are recognized as among some of the finest Italian wines produced; the flag-ship being considered the best Merlot in Italy, while Guisto di Nortri also garnering nearly-universal praise.

Tua Rita, which’s name is derived from an inversion of Rita Tua’s first and last name, is celebrated for its many accomplishments and many contributions to the Italian wine industry. Tua Rita put the Suvereto DOC (Denominazation di Origine Controllata) on the map and established what has become the Suvereto DOCG (Denominazation di Origine Controllata e Garanita) as a rival to the Bolgheri DOC. This is an incredible feat given the high acclaim Bolgheri wines consistently receive. Their wines have reached “cult” status and due to low yields, there is high demand and short supply, making Tua Rita among the most difficult wines to find in Italy. Their portfolio combined has an annual production of 220,000 bottles, of which a mere 10,000 accounts for the flag-ship, Redigaffi. The estate made history with their “now” legendary 2000 Redigaffi becoming the first Italian wine to be rated 100 points by Robert Parker, helping to place Italian wines in the elite category of world-class wines. A far cry from modest intentions and a humble retirement plan.

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