Summus. Latin for Summit, or the highest excellence.
So why was I concerned when I found out the blend of one of my favorite Super Tuscans was changing? We as wine consumers tend to get attached to some of our favorite wines and we want them to remain the way we came to love them. Summus was a blend of my two favorites, Brunello & Cabernet, with the tiniest does of Syrah. I had tasted every vintage produced since 1988 and routinely bought the wine upon release. With the 2007 vintage, the wine changed. But as they say, the more things change...
The 2009 Castello Banfi Summus is now 40% Cabernet, 40% Syrah, and 15% Sangiovese Grosso. Oddly, I didn't realize this until after the first time I tasted the vintage, and despite the reduction in Sangiovese (from 25%) I thought the wine displayed more Sangiovese character at this stage than it has in vintages.
It's dark purple in the glass. The aromas lift from the glass. Crushed berries, new leather, tobacco, smoke and mint. The aromas are sharp, and laser like. Seamless yet distinct. On the palate, the wine is full bodied, juicy and ripe, with mouth cleansing acidity that provides freshness and lift to the deep fruit flavors. There's cocoa dust, stones and earth on the back palate and a smokey-meaty aspect to the wine that is very enjoyable - clearly this is the increased Syrah asserting itself. It's one of the best young Summus I've tasted and given what many top tier Super Tuscans cost, this is a relative bargain at $52. Buy what you can. Delicious! 93 points.
|Since 2007, Summus is a blend of: 40% Cabernet, 40% Syrah and 15% Sangiovese|