Solaia has been one of Italy's most brilliant wines since the early eighties. Made in a Bordeaux-like style, it will age for two decades or more. The 1998, a blend of 75% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Sangiovese, and 5% Cabernet Franc (8,000 cases), was aged for 14 months in new and one-year old French oak casks prior to being bottled without filtration. Yields were a low 30 hectoliters per hectare. The 1998 is a classically-structured, dense, full-bodied, youthful, well-balanced wine designed for cellaring. Its opaque ruby/purple color is accompanied by a classic bouquet of black currants, vanillin, earth, tobacco, and a touch of mint. Full-bodied, moderately tannic, dense, and concentrated, this backward 1998 needs 3-4 years of cellaring.