On thursday just gone I was delighted to join Andrea Franchetti in a tasting given for the Oxford University Wine Circle. The tasting was, two trios of the great estate but ten years apart. The wines were in magnum and had been sent to Oxford one week prior to the tasting:

After giving a low down on the estate and the ideas behind it we were off and tasting. Going from the youngest and most recently bottle wine (2011) back to the first vintage of Trinoro (1997). The wines were all severed cool having been opened 15-30minutes in advance and not decanted.

2011 – Decadent, black fruit but not heavy fruit, creamy in texture, a little light spice, good acidity, there is an opulence. A red element to the fruit character as the wine opens out. 18/20.

2009 – Almost impossible to discern between the red and black fruit. The fruit is dense but not heavy, the savoury side is there but in no way overpowering. A hard wine to describe as the balance is exquisite (something I found only yesterday with Dominus 2010). Almost any flavour you can think of, from damsons to bacon, can be found. Very serious 19/20. (see comment regarding 2001 below).

2007 – An almost Amarone like note on the nose. This is hi-octane. A little smokiness gives way to a bright red fruit. Bruised fruit and a little leather is evident on the palate. It is a heady wine to drink with big food or even after dinner. If Francois Mitjavile made wine in Tuscany there is a chance it would taste like this, a touch “degraded”. 17-17.5/20. This may be in an every so slightly adolescent phase.

2001 – Wow, superb. When Andrea said he feels it is the best wine he has made I was worried that expectation may cause disappointment. I was wrong. There is a sweet ripeness but also balanced by a gentle leather and tobacco. The structure has just started to mellow and whilst it is here it is “in” the wine. Very long, splendid, really superb. In so many way the bother of the 2009. I need some of this for my son (born in 2001). 19.5/20

1999 – Some ripe green bell-pepper and a funky stink that soon blows off. Lovely acidity, fresh fruits, on the red side. The savoury element of this wine is fascinating like a vitamin B pill. Has a real easy complexity about it, really enjoyable. 18/20.

1997 – So drinkable, easy going, mellow, lovely fruit but also a little beef stock and cheesecloth. A wine that is in a lovely phase two of it’s life. Really showed well, when you think how young the vines were this is quite remarkable. Lovely. 18/20.

I have been drinking and tasting Trinoro or quite some time now but this tasting really exceeded my expectations in both the way the wines had aged and the overall quality. I must admit bias as I do work for the UK agent but the way the older trio had evolved but retained their sweet fruit is very encouraging or a Andrea described it “rewarding”.