For the first time in Wine Spectator's history, an Italian wine has been named Wine Of The Year.

The 1997 Antinori Solaia from Tuscany has been awarded the number one spot for 2000. While France and California have traditionally dominated this list, Italian wines have become a new force in 2000 with three out of Wine Spectator's top ten picks. According to Wine Spectator, it has only been in the last few decades that Italy has begun to make world-class wines, and wine producer Piero Antinori is credited with being a major force in this new generation of Italian winemaking.

This Cabernet Sauvignon blend won the Wine Of The Year for its outstanding combination of quality, price, availability and historic achievement. The retail cost of the wine on release was $115 per bottle.

Wine Spectator's editorial staff tasted more than 11,000 newly released wines over this last year before making their decision; the top ten wines of 2000 are:

1. Antinori Toscana Solaia 1997 - Italy
2. Viader Napa Valley 1997 - California
3. Whitehall Lane Cabernet Sauvignon Napa Valley Reserve 1997 -
4. Le Vieux Donjon Chateauneuf-du-Pape 1998 - France
5. Joseph Phelps Insignia Napa Valley 1997 - California
6. Justin Isosceles Paso Robles 1997 - California
7. Chateau La Nerthe Chateauneuf-du-Pape Cuvee des Cadettes 1998 -
8. Merryvale Profile Napa Valley 1997 - California
9. Tenuta dell'Ornellaia Bolgheri Ornellaia 1997 - Italy
10. Castello dei Rampolla Toscana Sammarco 1997 - Italy

For a complete list of the Top 100, see Wine Spectator's December 31st issue or visit the magazine's Web site at starting December 1st.

Wine Spectator magazine, the largest circulation wine publication in the world, is produced by M. Shanken Communications, Inc.