ArticleSuper BlendsWritten by Bob PeakOne group of internationally famous wines — the Super Tuscans — has come to represent revolutionary change in the wine world in the last few decades. After long-held traditional principles and practices controlled European winemaking for decades (or centuries), some Italian winemakers in the Tuscany region deliberately broke from tradition and began making new blends. Their revolution was not only successful as a commercial enterprise, it brought about changes in European laws to accommodate the new directions. What were the winemakers trying to do, and why? What can we, as home winemakers, learn from their experience? One wine associated with Tuscany for many years has been Chianti. In particular, the Chianti Classico sub-region was renowned for excellent Sangiovese-based wines. Tradition in the region had long guided the blending and proportions of various grape varieties, with Sangiovese always dominant. Wines made from Sangiovese grapes are often bright with acidity, have prominent cherry notes, and medium level tannins. In the 1960s, the Italian government codified long winemaking traditions into the DOC system: Denominazione di Origine Controllata. The system was intended to assureAlready a member? Log InYou'll Also Like Article MEMBERS ONLY Fruit & Grape Blends When a wine comes up lacking, the solution may just be blending a totally different type of wine with it. Grape wines and wines made from other fruits often have complementary characteristics that lend themselves as a key ingredient in the other. Article MEMBERS ONLY Confessions: Revealing a secret to my success A California winemaker confesses his secret to making a good wine blend great through the use of his secret weapon.