Which is best Brunello 2006 or 2007?
Brunello di Montalcino and other wines
At Casato Prime Donne surely 2007, thanks to the new vineyards that have now reached maturity in the amount produced and the quality They are, however, two extraordinary harvests, one after the other, which is really very rare in Brunello‘s history. Both with a 5 star rating, yet two harvest very different one from the other.
It’s worthwhile examining them so as to understand what they have in common and how the best Sangiovese grapes in Montalcino can come from very different situations, so that there cannot be a precise recipe as there is in the kitchen, but how then can be, on the other hand, some natural circumstances which when they coincided must be understood and made the most of by the grape pickers and wine makers.
In 2006 the winter was rainy, so the soil was wet and this helped the vines resist the great heat in July. The rest of the summer was rainy with some days which were actually cold. The changing of colour of the grapes from green to blue, took place regularly, as described in textbooks, quickly and completely.
The sun came back half way through September and stayed for the duration of the grape harvest. The hot days and the tendency of rapid fermentations with immediate temperature peaks forced Barbara Magnani, the cellar master , to use massive amounts of dry ice.
The grape clusters had small grapes, with an elastic skin, and a great aptitude to transfer into the wine its poliphenols giving it an exceptional content of tannins and anthocyanins.
The 2007 vintage was very different, there was practically no winter. In January, in sunny areas, it was possible to eat out of doors just like in Sicily. In the spring, finally the rainfalls arrived and these continued well into the summer, interrupting the heat with storms and drastic decreases in the temperature. The ripening of the Sangiovese grapes took place for that year also in a very regular manner and the harvest began
only a few days sooner than usual. The only factor that was unusual for the 2007 harvest was the high acidity which remained high regardless of the high sugar content, and balanced only once the wine had carried out its malolactic fermentation
The factors which are common to both vintages are the rainfall, which did not let the vines suffer the heat, and the abundance of extractable poliphenols in grapes which were very very sound and ripe. Everything else was different even though the results were excellent in both cases.