DOC Montalcino! Italy’s Sangiovese in Good and Great Vintages

16 Nov

Castello Banfi Rosso Di Montalcino 2013, 13.5%ABV, $20/bottle.

The wine’s color shows a deep ruby center with garnet edging, while the nose exhibits menthol, cherry and red plum. In the mouth, it is a soft and delicate balance with mature red fruit expanding across the palate with a gentle acidity that slowly builds in the mouth. The medium-long finish has notes of young tobacco, cedar plank, and calcium.  This bottle stayed valid for almost a week and paired well with white and red meats as well as Italian and South American spices. After five days the acidity was pronounced and a slight bitterness noted the finish, but I was very impressed at how well this opened bottle maintained consistency over time, offering excellent value at this price point.

Banfi Rossi

Castello Banfi Brunello Di Montalcino 2010, 14%ABV, Average $61/bottle, as low as $50/bottle online.

The color is full garnet with a ruby edging, the nose is perfumed, showing red plum, raspberry, hints of vanilla, white pepper, and mature oak. In the mouth, a delicate balance of full-bodied  and slightly sweet fruit: plum, cassis, dried cranberry and fig jam cross the palate followed by notes of limestone, road tar, leather and green pepper. The lengthy finish offers stone, dust, nicely evolved tannins. The harmonious balance in the wine stayed consisted from the first opening of the bottle until my final tasting on the fifth day after opening when I could no longer restrain myself to only an ounce. This wine complemented salad, pasta sauces, asian spices, meat, strong cheeses and chocolate. Beautifully feminine in structure, this Brunello deftly demonstrates the beauty of the Sangiovese grape. Excellent after decanting and consistent over several days, here is a perfect example of the stunning fruit that Italian winemakers were talking about in their 2010 growing year,  matched by expert winemaking and balanced aging. Don’t just buy a bottle, you can go for case quantity comfortably on this wine as it will age beautifully and continue to improve.

Brunello

 

à votre santé!

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