Brunello di Montalcino 2015: il buono, il brutto e il cattivo (e il grande)

Per fortuna, nonostante le sfide, un buon numero di produttori hanno azzeccato tutte le mosse ed hanno realizzato Brunelli 2015 eccezionali con frutta succosa, freschezza ed equilibrio. Mentre alcuni mostrano un buon potenziale di invecchiamento, la maggior parte dei migliori vini avrà bisogno solo di qualche anno per arrivare al momento ideale per essere goduti, ma dovrebbero mantenersi bene per ulteriori 8-10 anni.

Brunello di Montalcino 2014: un’annata dall’eleganza facilmente approcciabile

La 2014 è stata una delle annate più fredde e piovose della memoria recente in Italia e Montalcino non ha fatto eccezione. Tuttavia, grazie alla competenza dei produttori più dedicati, ci sono alcuni deliziosi Brunelli di questa annata appena rilasciata,  vibranti e carichi di finezza, con poche eccezioni si possono già godere ora e nei prossimi anni. Offriranno puro piacere e bevibilità mentre si aspetta che i 2013 si sviluppino pienamente.

Gianfranco Soldera, grande produttore di Brunello, muore a 82 anni

Gianfranco Soldera, uno dei vignaioli simbolo di Montalcino – noto per la produzione di eccezionali vini di notevole finezza ed equilibrio – è deceduto ieri, 16 febbraio, a Montalcino dopo che la sua auto è uscita di strada a causa di un presumibile malore. Aveva 82 anni. Soldera ha fondato la sua tenuta Case Basse …

Cult Brunello Producer Gianfranco Soldera Dies at 82

Gianfranco Soldera, Montalcino’s most controversial and outspoken producer – known for making stunning wines boasting remarkable finesse and balance – died yesterday, February 16, in Montalcino when his car careened off the road. First responders found him in cardiac arrest. He was 82. Soldera established his Case Basse estate in 1972, leaving behind a successful …

Brunello di Montalcino 2013: un’annata classica e splendente, da mettere in cantina

Se volete sperimentare l’energia, l’eleganza e la struttura che per secoli ha attratto appassionati e collezionisti al vino di Montalcino, il Brunello 2013 è la vostra annata. Si tratta di un’annata classica: i migliori 2013 hanno un notevole potenziale di invecchiamento, come non ho visto da anni. Ho assaggiato 181 dei Brunello appena usciti e …

2013: Radiant, cool climate Brunellos for the cellar

If you want to experience the energy, elegance and age-worthy structure that first drew wine lovers and collectors to Brunello di Montalcino decades ago, then 2013 is your vintage. A classic vintage, the best 2013s boast remarkable aging potential, the likes of which I haven’t seen in years. I tasted 181 of the just-released Brunellos, …

2012 Brunello: a return to finesse and age-worthy structure

If you love wines with elegance, fragrance and longevity, then you’ll love the just-released 2012 Brunellos. And even though I’m one of the biggest critics of the Consorzio’s Brunello vintage classifications (I find most vintages have been overrated), when it comes to 2012’s five-star rating, I completely I agree. Defying the intense heat of the …

Make it a Double in Montalcino: 2011 Brunello and 2010 Riserva

Perhaps the biggest disadvantage facing the just-released 2011 Brunello vintage – awarded four out five stars by the Consorzio – is that it comes on the heels of the widely acclaimed 2010. And while the 2011s won’t be remembered as an historic vintage, overall they have an immediate, juicy allure that exceeded my expectations from …

Brunello 2010. Some fantastic wines alongside under performers

After the wild success of the 2010 vintage in Barolo and Barbaresco, Bolgheri and Chianti Classico, all eyes are on Montalcino. Although the Brunello 2010s will officially debut at the annual press tastings in late February – along with the 2009 Riservas, I was fortunate to preview almost 200 of the new release in early …

Brunello di Montalcino 2008 and 2007 Riserva

The latest releases from Montalcino’s cellars have had their first outing and they’re a mixed bag. The 2008 Brunellos and 2007 riservas shown at the annual Benvenuto Brunello tasting ranged from outstanding to unpleasant, and the two vintages could pose serious challenges for Brunello fans. Read the article: Brunello di Montalcino 2008 and Riserva 2007

Montalcino rallies round as Soldera’s Brunellos are destroyed

Vandals have destroyed thousands of litres of ageing Brunello in the cellars of cult producer Gianfranco Soldera. The cellars at Soldera’s Case Basse estate in Montalcino were broken into and the taps opened on all of his Brunello barrels, draining the every litre of vintages from 2007 to 2012 – more than 600 hectolitres (60,000 …

Brunello’s true believer (by Keith Levenberg)

O’Keefe dishes all the secrets about who’s on the hillsides and who’s on the flats; and for those who would find it fascinating to know who makes wine from Montosoli (probably the second-most esteemed Brunello vineyard after Biondi-Santi’s Il Greppo estate) without bothering to mention it on the label, this is the source. And a …

The Best Brunello Book Yet (by Tom Maresca)

Kerin O’Keefe’s Brunello di Montalcino: Understanding and Appreciating One of Italy’s Greatest Wines (University of California Press; $39.95) is a must-have book for lovers of Brunello and, in fact, for anyone at all serious about Italian wine. Brunello has burgeoned in my wine-drinking lifetime from a few more than half a dozen producers, mostly clustered …

Brunello: no change in the rules, producers vote

Brunello di Montalcino producers have voted by a landslide to leave the wine 100% Sangiovese. In yesterday’s highly publicised assembly to decide the fate of the beleaguered wine, 96% voted to leave Brunello as it is. ‘Only 4% of producers voted to change the production code,’ a triumphant Franco Biondi Santi told decanter.com. Biondi Santi …

Brunello: Image or substance, truth or dare?

“By law, Brunello di Montalcino can be made only with 100 percent Sangiovese cultivated in Montalcino. Otherwise, it’s not Brunello. It shouldn’t be difficult to grasp,” asserts Gianfranco Soldera of Case Basse regarding “Brunellogate,” the grape-blending scandal that broke wide open just days before Vinitaly, the country’s largest annual wine fair, rocking both the sleepy …

Brunello’s Moment of Truth

While the notion of terroir has been both celebrated and ridiculed in some of the world’s greatest wine-producing areas, one of Italy’s most illustrious denominations has instead chosen to ignore it—until now.  Kerin O’Keefe discovers Montalcino’s unofficial subzones. Majestic. Elegant. Powerful. Long-lived. Expensive. Rare. All these adjectives have been applied to Brunello di Montalcino by …

Kerin O’Keefe racconta Franco Biondi Santi, il gentleman del Brunello (di Franco Ziliani)

Con il suo libro Kerin non ci propone solo una documentata, appassionata, ben raccontata biografia della dinastia Biondi Santi e di Franco, gentleman del Brunello, descritto a tutto tondo nella sua umanità e nel suo voler essere il degno testimone di un impegno, quello della qualità senza discussioni, che è sentito ancor più fortemente perché …

Italian wine reviews (tasted through March 2019)

Check out my latest reviews: (149 wines) Franciacorta, Rosso di Montalcino, Chiaretto, Rosato and more Top 20 of the Month Berlucchi 2012 ’61 Nature Rosé (Franciacorta) Lombardy Made entirely with Pinot Nero, this elegant sparkler is both dazzling and … 95 Points $68 Valdicava 2013 Madonna del Piano Riserva (Brunello di Montalcino) Tuscany Earthy aromas of …

Italian wine reviews (tasted through February 2019)

Check out my latest reviews: (267 wines) Brunello di Montalcino, Barbaresco Riserva, Franciacorta and more Top 20 of the Month Biondi Santi 1995 Riserva (Brunello di Montalcino) Just re-released, this supremely elegant complex red is a testament to Brunello’s … Cellar Selection 98 Points $1100 Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona 2013 Pianrosso (Brunello di Montalcino) Wild-berry, fragrant …

Italian wine reviews (tasted through January 2019)

Check out my latest reviews: (295 wines) Brunello di Montalcino, Bolgheri, Toscana IGT and more Top 20 of the Month Tenuta San Guido 2016 Bolgheri Sassicaia Aromas of cedar, tobacco, blue flower and spiced plum fuse together in … 98 Points Tuscany $250 Baricci 2012 Nello Riserva (Brunello di Montalcino) Chopped mint, forest floor, tilled earth …