Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, has made no secret of her love of wine.
Over the years she’s actually mentioned it quite often.
There’s one kind in particular that she’s fond of, and she’s not alone.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson also takes a bottle along when he’s trying to impress, and when Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid, visited the Prime Minister, he brought a stash of this particular red with him.
Over to the Telegraph for more on what Meghan has to say about Tignanello – a wine that’s become a bit of a status symbol amongst the elite.
It’s basically the British version of rocking up with a Rupert Optima, followed by your host’s nod of approval.
The Duchess loves it so much that in 2014 she named her lifestyle blog, “a hub for the discerning palate”, after it. ‘
On The Tig, she wrote: “Several years ago I had a sip of wine called Tignanello (pronounced ‘teen-ya-nello’)…
“Suddenly I understood what people meant by the body, legs, structure of wine. It was an ah-ha moment at its finest. For me, it became a Tig moment – a moment of getting it.”
Tignanello is a Super Tuscan, which is a red wine blend that uses non-native Italian grapes.
David Way, a spokesperson at the Wine & Spirit Education Trust who’s taking part in September’s Wine Education Week, notes that Tignanello was the first of this new breed – it was first produced in 1970 by the Antinori house that has been making wine since the 14th century – and remains one of the most famous.
It was the first sangiovese to be aged in French barriques (small barrels, rather than large oak casks traditional in Tuscany); the first to be blended with French grapes; and the first to not include white grapes (previously compulsory in Tuscan blends).
It’s a nice label, and I appreciate the simplicity and colour scheme.
Less is more – again, observe:
Back to Tignanello, which typically uses a blend of 80% sangiovese, 15% cabernet sauvignon and f5% cabernet franc. It comes with a bit of a warning, though:
One wine expert I spoke to described Tignanello as “a bit of a status symbol. It’s the personalised number plate of wine. A bit flash.”
Boris Johnson is the “personalised number plate” of British prime ministers, so his love of the wine makes sense now.
In general, I don’t care who drinks it. The moment the words ‘personalised number plate’ got thrown into the mix I lost interest.
Luckily for South Africans, we live in a country that produces some incredible wines, so it’s not hard to find something with style and class that doesn’t remind people of being stuck in traffic behind “PLAYA WP”.
We’ve said it before and we will say it again – at around R200 a bottle, it doesn’t get better than the Rupert Optima.
It’s the kind of wine you bring to a dinner with confidence, so be sure to tell everyone you brought it along when it gets opened. Seth was going on about the success of the Optima at one of his recent soirées. His guests couldn’t put the bottle down.
Just so you don’t get caught out when asked about your educated decision, the Optima has a complex melange of inviting deep blueberry, cassis and spicy cocoa aromas. The wine is structured and graceful with a velvety, soft-textured mouth feel and lovely hints of oak and fruit. Complex, nuanced and subtly powerful, nothing is overplayed.
To put it in simple terms, it looks and tastes sophisticated.
You can get your hands on a bottle of your very own here.
Better make that two – it won’t last long once your guests get a taste of it.
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