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Brunello di Montalcino DOCG

Brunello di Montalcino

Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita

Brunello is produced in Montalcino, the best place in the world to grow the Sangiovese variety. A grape grown in Montalcino for hundreds and maybe thousands of years. Thanks to the climate and the soil, it has taken on specific characteristics: it produce a low yield of grapes, with small clusters and small berries. For this reason it is possible to create, in Montalcino, a great red wine apt for a long ageing such as Brunello, using only one variety: Sangiovese.  Brunello is the Italian wine that remains the longest in the cellar; it goes on sale four and a half years after the harvest, of theses at least two must be in oak barrels.

Casato Prime Donne, where this Brunello di Montalcino comes from, is a property made up of 40 hectares where the present owner’s ancestors used to go hunting, and on their honeymoons. It was a part of a large estate belonging to one of the most important families in Montalcino that for more than 4 centuries had cultivated this land passing it down the family line, during the last generations from mother to daughter, as it belonged to Donatella Cinelli Colombini’s grandmother, then to her mother, and in the future it will belong to her daughter Violante Gardini.

 

It was however the present owners grandfather, Giovanni Colombini, one of the Brunello pioneers, to interpret  Casato Prime Donne’s vocation for the production of grapes and to plant here the first “specialized” vineyards, as they were called then to distinguish them from those that were called “promiscuous” where the farmers grew vines together olive trees and wheat.

To begin with the property was called Casato. The name was changed into Casato Prime Donne in 1998 when Donatella received the property and decided to create here the first winery in Italy to be all female staffed. The cellar staff, the wine maker Valérie Lavigne, the cellar master and even the sales staff guided by Violante Gardini the CinellicolombiniJr, who in the future will guide the winery, are all women.

 

Bottles produce: from 15,000 to 40,000 depending on the vintage. Every year for the production of Brunello only the most apt grapes get chosen, if the weather has been favourable there are more clusters otherwise it is necessary to be more selective.

 

Ratings and Prizes: Every year the Brunello gets high ratings from the most important specialized international press. These are the highest rankings ever obtained: Wine Enthusiast 95/100 and 14th in the TOP 100 in 2005; Wine Spectator 94/100; Wine Advocate 94/100; James Suckling 93/100; Jancis Robinson 17/20.

 

Grape variety

 

100% Sangiovese.

In total there are 16 hectares of vineyard. Every year the best 10 are chosen to make the Brunello. These are on the Northern side of the Montalcino region, the cooler area that has most benefitted from climate change. 225 m above sea level, on a small hill facing midday, with a soil rich in clay and silt. The vineyard is divided into 4 small parcels planted between 2001 and 2006 with a density of  5,500 vines per hectare and trained with the spurred cordon system and cultivated following the organic regime so without the use of product for chemical synthesis . The average production is around 5.5 tons per hectare. The winter pruning is done following the Simonit- Sirch system.

Ageing

All of the jobs done in the vineyard are traditional and mostly done by hand: pruning, cleaning, thinning out, de-leafing and obviously the harvest. All is done manually. The harvest date is chosen based on tasting the grapes, so the vineyard can be divided into sections that will be picked on the exact day of perfect ripening. From the moment a cluster is picked to its arrival into the fermentation tank less than 30 minutes have passed. This speed permits the quality of the fruit to remain intact. The clusters are chosen in the vineyard and again in the cellar where the berries get chosen on a sorting table so that only the best quality reaches the fermentation vats. Fermentation takes place in small stainless steel or bare concrete tanks, open on top, and with a mechanical system for punching the cap that allows the immersion of the skins without the use of pumps. The vinification procedures are very traditional and delicate so as to be able to respect totally the quality of the grapes. Since 2008 selected indigenous yeasts have been on trial. For this project the “Tinaia del Vento” (windy fermentation hall) was constructed with its 8 small fermentation tanks just a few metres distant from the vineyard. To use yeasts form Montalcino is very important to preserve the identity of the territory. The ageing in oak for the future Brunello takes place in tonneaux and successively in big barrels. The smaller containers come from small French artisan that use only oak seasoned for 24-36 months and cut along the grain. Barrels made “to measure” coming from 5 different artisan-like factories so as to permit finding the perfect equilibrium with the wine. The Brunello di Montalcino stays in barrel at least 2 years but often this ageing lasts practically three years using also the big traditional barrel from the region. After a period of at least 6 months in bottles, stored in temperature controlled storerooms, the Brunello gets sold in 34 nations around the world. It is sold and served only in the top restaurants and wine stores.

Home ageing: 20-30 years and more. Keep the bottles lying down in a dark and cool place

Colour

 

Dark ruby red that becomes garnet with ageing.

The wine dances slowly around the glass thanks to its richness.

Aroma

 

Fine, net, complex, deep. Evident notes recalling small red fruits and spices.

Taste

 

Elegant, full , harmonic, round, lasts at length pleasantly in the mouth.

WAY OF SERVING

Serve with: Important meat dishes and aged cheeses.

Per Service Temperature correggere con

Alcohol: 13,5-14% vol depending on the vintage.

Service temperature: 18 °C -64°F in transparent balloon shaped crystal wine goblets. Open at least one hour before serving.

                                                                       

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