I am in the process of relocating to the San Francisco area, and therefore, I have the ‘luxury’ of thinning out my wine cellar. I’m not happy about this, but as they say – “you can’t take it with you”. Especially not for $50/case in shipping (and the risk of ruining a $1000/case).
Tonight, we were having a nice big ‘ol family Italian meal, so I went digging in the cellar. I came across a very special bottle which was a gift from a friend of mine – a 2004 Fattoria La Lecciaia Brunello Di Montalcino .
Brunello is a name for the local version of the Sangiovese grape, which in this case, is grown in the town of Montalcino, Tuscany. These are 100% Sangiovese wines, and are in my opinion a great balance between a light Chianti and a more tannic New World wine.
My issue with Brunello (and Italian wine in general) is that I don’t know enough about them to justify a $40, $50, $60+ bottle of wine to REALLY taste and understand what they are capable of. In this case, I was able to do so, and I am glad I did!
- As with many Italian wines, it is a lighter ruby color – very clean and filtered in appearance.
- The nose is gorgeous. Subtle graphite, black cherries, and a distant aroma of a campfire.
- Surprisingly tannic for such a light wine, but not in an overpowering or ‘splintery’ way. Just beautifully adding a degree of sharpness to match the mineral qualities of the nose.
- The flavors are wonderful. Black cherry and RIPE raspberry fruit – like the ones you buy which are a DARK red. I think that the oak adds a little vanilla too, but it seems like french oak or non-new oak, so it’s an element versus a dominant characteristic.