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Vino Di Brunello Montalcino

ed Wine made from the glorious Sangiovese grape- are sipping delights of any Tuscan trip.

Benvenuto Brunello NYC 2019
And since the early 2000s, affordable and trophy bottles of this Italian  wine produced in an area 80 km south of Florence- are readily available here too.

For consumers-the DOC (aged one year Rossi di Montalcino) and  DOCG designation (aged 2 years in oak- typically 5 years-with 6 years for Riserva)-appear on the bottle labels assure inhibiters of the origins of Brunello di Montalcino sold.


With clay to rocky shale-limestone soils depending on elevation, southern/northern slopes, and weather that reflects sea and mountain breezes not too far way...the samples we tried had finishes ranging from bold-sometimes balsamic tastes to a more refined elegance (5-6 years aged in oak), notable tannins for all -some with balanced acidity (how aged) -and really there black berry flavors -that also varied, depending on age and vintage.

The younger just released bottles-have a tart red cherry distinction and bright ruby red colors-and no surprise the aged- minimum 6 years Riserva 2012/2013 offerings, had more  dried fig, flowery, tobacco-y leather-sun dried overtones (ahhhh the glorious Tuscan weather)  -with smoother elegant subtleties.

Observation=we felt less earthy ("terroir") distinct tastes than Bordeaux - but similarly-the Riserva bottles can be aged 15-20 years.

Altesino Brunello Di Montalcino full bodied wines-well distributed here-including the DOCG Riserva 2013. Our wonderful discovery=-the Brunello Di Montalcino  Montosoli  (second on left imported by the Winebow Group)= delicious 100% sangiovese grosso grapes from the top of the hill -limestone soil-rich cherry plum fruit awesome! Found online retailing for around  $90-$100/bottle
Interesting -  selections aged like the French Bordeaux -aka "modern" that pick up the distinct oak enhancements of small oak French barrels-seem to come from grapes/lower elevation.  The traditional method- Brunellos-are aged in large oak barrels from northern Croatia- from higher up plantings.

We also enjoyed the 'easy' to drink meal pleasing  blends tried-made of merlot and/or Cabernet Sauvignon grapes blended with the signature Sangiovese (aka Sant' Antimo-no aging requirements, typically cheaper in price fyi).

Personal favs- the acclaimed Riserva 2012 and also Riserva 2013 selections just hitting these shores-and single vineyard offerings- were highlights-palate wise.

Elia Pallazzesi Brunello Si Montalone Riserva 2013 lovely deep claret tone
We also felt that the wine growers captured each year's distinct vintage style versus putting on a specific producer's individual style-the latter we hear a lot about for California Cabs, for example.

The 2014s-not so polished-but are still decent values-we expect these to show up on restaurant menus-by the glass options.

Villa Poggio Salvi

Super Bowl Time=snack time big time...and having a bottle (or 3) of Brunello Di Montalcino will impress guests and add a touch of Italian flair to America's signature game.


what else---Italian cheeses....with protected designation of origin-just like the wines!


charcuterie/fruit...Brunello's are big bold enough for hearty meats/stews too
Cheese, olives and breadsticks