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Brunello Di Montalcino

The Brunello di Montalcino wine region, nestled in the heart of southern central Tuscany, Italy, is a historic and prestigious destination for wine enthusiasts worldwide. Its rich history dates back to the early 14th century when the first records of red wines from Montalcino emerged. The region gained recognition for its wine when French mercenary leader Blaise de Montluc, during the siege of Montalcino, discovered the remarkable qualities of the local wine.

However, it was in the 1870s that the modern Brunello di Montalcino style took shape, largely thanks to the pioneering efforts of Clemente Santi and Ferruccio Biondi-Santi. Their use of Sangiovese Grosso grapes, a large-berried form of Sangiovese, set the stage for the distinctive wine we know today.

Situated around the picturesque hilltop village of Montalcino, the vineyards benefit from excellent sun exposure and altitudes not exceeding 600 meters, ensuring optimal ripening conditions. The warm and dry climate in Montalcino allows for consistent grape ripening, with Sangiovese Grosso grapes often maturing a week earlier than those in neighboring regions.

Brunello di Montalcino wines are exclusively crafted from Sangiovese Grosso grapes, also known as Brunello. These wines are known for their garnet color and offer aromas of red and black fruit, complemented by hints of vanilla, spice, and subtle earthiness. With an alcohol content of around 14-15%, they boast a robust structure, balanced by bright acidity and well-defined tannins.

Traditional winemaking methods involve extended aging in large Slavonian oak vats, resulting in complex and elegant wines. Modernists, on the other hand, have explored fruitier styles by using smaller French oak barriques and shortening the aging period.

Brunello di Montalcino wines must adhere to strict regulations, including being made solely from Sangiovese grapes and aged for a minimum of four years, with at least two years spent in oak barrels. For Riserva wines, this aging period extends to five years.

Additionally, the region also produces the Rosso di Montalcino appellation, which offers a more approachable and youthful expression of Sangiovese, often from younger vines or vineyard plots that receive less sunlight.

In essence, Brunello di Montalcino is the embodiment of Sangiovese’s potential, offering wine enthusiasts a taste of history, tradition, and the captivating flavors of this iconic Italian wine region.

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