At the end of this week, we will receive shipments from Biondi Santi, Il Palazzone and our own Fratelli D’Anna all containing 2010 Brunello Di Montalcino. These are some of the most exciting wines I have tried from Tuscany.
Orders will be dispatched early next week and most of our best restaurants and wine merchants have ordered these wines. Super excited!
Normally I give myself an afternoon in Tuscany to try as many wines as I can from not only the producers I import but also from those that I love to drink. And for the 2010 vintage for Montalcino, I couldn’t pull myself away from Tuscany and spent time the next morning trying even more 2010 Brunello. These wines are amazing. So complete and complex it is staggering.
After so much controversy in the past in Montalcino, it is fantastic to see a string of strong vintages to bring this town back and centre in the eyes of the wine loving public. I tried as many of my favourite wines as possible and it included wineries like Gorelli, Fuligni, Costanti, Il Poggione and La Fortuna.
Of course I got to visit the producers I represent like Biondi Santi, Il Palazzone (we also import Soldera and have our own label but obviously these wines were not at Vinitaly) and the good news is that in the next couple of weeks we will have a second allocation of the 2010 Il Palazzone plus the first allocations of Biondi Santi and Fratelli D’Anna.
Pretty exciting time for the wine loving public in Oz who are going to be hit between the eyes with some of the best Brunello they have ever tasted with the 2010 vintage Brunello.
After arriving in our warehouse yesterday from Italy, the 2010 @ilpalazzone stocks are already 2/3 gone and we have already polished off two bottles amongst ourselves! What a wine. Described by Antonio Galloni as a ‘very beautiful wine.’ I doubt the first shipment of this wine will last more than a week.
Luckily we have secured a second allocation which should arrive mid year. What a wine and illustrates why I have been talking up 2010 Brunello for the last few years.
Your going to gear a lot of hype about 2010 vintage for Brunello.
Sometimes vintages get hyped and it means nothing. Vintage 2007 was such a vintage and I bought zero bottles from the producers I represent in Australia. Instead I bought more 2006 and then 2008 (not a lauded vintage like 2007) which is something that I stick to. If I don’t like a vintage, even if it makes my job much easier (everyone loves reviews), then no matter how much the vintage is loved, then I won’t buy the wines from that vintage.
However, sometimes the moons align and I absolutely love a vintage that is hyped. 2010 is exactly the case and I have been trying these wines out of barrel and then bottle for the last four years. They have always looked great. They have always look balanced. And this is the reason why I visit Montalcino (and Barolo/Barbaresco) almost every year. You need to try the wines as they evolve from barrel to bottle to get an understanding of the vintage and the wine.
If I had to compare the vintage with another vintage, it would be 2004. However, I think the 2010 have better structure than the 2004 and should live for a very long time. What I love about the wines is that the have the perfect level of ripeness for Montalcino and acidity and tannin to burn. It reminds of maybe what great vintages were like twenty, thirty or forty years ago and long before global warming.
As much as I love 2010 Barolo, I love 2010 Brunello. Whilst I represent Biondi Santi, Soldera and Il Palazzone I would be buying all of the great producers: Fuligni, Costanti, Salvoni, Poggio di Sotto, etc. If you looking for a guide to follow on these wines, just wait. Whilst there are critics rushing to get out scores and reviews (and they are good), Galloni would be the person that I would be following. His reviews on the wines should be out in the next few weeks and if you have a wine merchant you relay on for Italian wine, then they should be all over this.
The 2010 Brunello’s from the wineries that I represent (plus my own under Fratelli D’Anna) should start to land in the next few weeks and I am going to have a tough time spreading them out around Australia. Not a bad problem to have though it it gives me lot’s of joy to see the wines of Montalcino from such a celebrated vintage, find a home with people that appreciate them.
Well after the usual 30 hours of flying we arrived at our hotel in Roma at 10pm. By 10.30pm we were sitting at my favorite restaurant, Armando al Pantheon enjoying half a bottle of Vino Nobile and a plate of Spaghetti All’Amatriciana. The perfect way to end a long day traveling to Italy.
As always it is great to see the Pantheon.
Tomorrow we are off early, firstly to visit Angelo Gaja’s Montalcino winery , Pieve Santa Restituta and then to Il Palazzone for a tasting of the upcoming vintages and dinner.
For the last two years, I have stayed in the town of Montalcino and caught up with Laura and Marco from Il Palazzone. The first year was to just look at the estate and try the wines. The second year was AS their Australian importer.
Unfortunately both visits I have only had time to spend one night in Montalcino and hopefully in the years to come, I will have more time to take in the beauty of such an amazing town.
On the hunt for wild asparagus with Stefano and Marco
Whilst we did a lot of things on our day with Laura and Marco (with one of the highlights being picking wild asparagus) the one thing that bowled us all over was the quality of the 2008 Il Palazzone Brunello di Montalcino. Wow what a wine. We were not surprised that the wine had sold out so quickly and we asked to be considered if any more became available.
Well lucky for us, stock put aside for a tender was not taken and we managed to score some for Australia. since this wine has been in Oz, I have had many bottles and each time it has left me just as impressed.
And it seems this wine impresses all those that taste it. Gary Walsh from The Wine Front has just rated it 95 points and said the following words about it:
‘Cherry, almonds, hazelnut, coffee, perhaps a little licorice. Pretty wine, but deceptively firm and purposeful. It’s medium bodied, fresh and clear fruited with cherry and nut flavours and plenty of graphite mineral character that rolls onto its very long sinewy tannin finish. Slightly smoky aftertaste. Beautiful wine. Drink 2015-2028’
It is a good sign when the journalist involved buys the wine he just reviewed, and six bottles are on the way up to Gary as we speak. Many Brunello lovers will already have this wine in their cellar. For those that don’t, there is a little bit more in our warehouses with the last shipment due sometime in November.
One wine that bowled me over in Montalcino in April was the 2008 Il Palazzone Brunello di Montalcino. Up against Soldera and Salvoni 2006 Brunello this wine was no slouch and if anything was my prefered wine of the night.
Traditional, structured and age worthy: it had me in a spin. After trying it Laura gave us the bad news that there was only 82 bottles available and it had already sold out. Well a month after arriving back, Laura gave us the great news that a European tender for the 2008 had not come through and we grabbed everything we could. Affordable but so complex Brunello available in July via @mondoimports
Anthony D'Anna: Italian wine importer and merchant in Australia