Last night I fell in love…with a bottle of wine.
Brunello di Montalcino is made exclusively from Sangiovese grapes grown in the Montalcino area of Tuscany. The winemaking requires extended maceration and at least 3 years of aging. In less than ideal vintages, or if the wine is not developing to expectations, it can be released as Rosso di Montalcino or “Baby Brunello”. By adhering to such high standards, it’s no wonder that Brunello di Montalcino has earned its place as one of Italy’s most prestigious wines.
Brunello is one of the wines we tend to save for special occasions since fine wine comes with a hefty price tag. We let this 2007 vintage decant for a while before drinking.
I’m intrigued by a nose that is a vegetal and floral potpourri, earthy, with a wisp of strawberry. But the love affair really begins on the palate with delectable fig and dried apricot. Currants and prunes round out the fruit flavors. The complex assortment of fruit is balanced by bright acidity and round tannins. Vanilla and oak with hints of Italian herbs appear in a medium-length finish.
The Brunello’s restrained wine-making style along with the fig-like qualities of the Sangiovese grape is an exciting change from our usual fruit-forward California Cabs, Zins, and Syrahs. Last night I left my routine behind and had an exhilarating affair with a sexy, dark Italian!