“Drinkable enough” is hardly a full-hearted endorsement but sometimes good enough.

I opened a trade sample bottle of Banfi’s Centine Toscana and found it very drinkable. The 2008 Toscana is a nice blend of Sangiovese, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Merlot.

You’ll get a little berry and some other rather unidentifiable red fruit on the palate. It is a soft red wine. The tannins are quite soft despite a combined 18 months in oak. The soft finish almost always makes me say that this is a good red wine for beginners. Or, a good red wine to serve in mass quantities.

Banfi has a big lineup of great products. The Centine is the value line with prices around $11-$12. Previous vintages of the Toscana consistently scored in the high 80s.

Again, many people would like this wine. It would be great to buy in volume for a big Italian wedding. A little too soft and supple for my tastes, but it’s a producer worth your trust and investment.

Send comment or questions to: hewitthoward@gmail.com

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