A great vintage producing complex, characterful wines
A trouble free vintage across the Tuscany region with an early spring, warm but not excessively hot summer and well distributed rainfall. There was a certain amount of rain early in the harvest but producers who picked later benefited from a period of uninterrupted fine weather.
Chianti had the tannin and acidity which was missing from the 1979s. Generally, 1978 was reckoned to be a good vintage for Riservas. At Montalcino results were slightly uneven, but the best wines were very good, if slightly tougher and more austere than the 1979s.
This was the debut vintage for Ama’s Vigneto Bellavista and Antinori’s Solaia, both of which came out well. In Chianti Classico it was a very successful year for Badia di Coltibuono. At Montalcino Poggione rated their Riserva very highly, and there were other long keeping wines from Costanti and Barbi Colombini. Sassicaia ’78 swept the board at an international Cabernet tasting organised in London by Decanter, with a flurry of 20/20 scores from the judges.