I actually did taste a few more brunelli today as well but tried to concentrate on STs. Impressions:
2009 Tignanello - Much more new oak in this wine than normal. Maybe just too young to determine potential but put off by the wood. 88.
2009 Podere Poggio Scalette Il Carbonaione - Oh no! Sorry PH but this one breaks the streak for me. Totally disjointed with super ripe fruit and harsh tannins. Hopefully an off bottle. 85.
2008 Cavalli Degli Dei - Nice black currant and cherry flavors with balanced acidity. I think the Petit Verdot adds a nice element to the wine. 91
2009 Argiano Solengo - Unripe tannins and the worst wine I tasted at the estate. I used to love this wine in the 90's up until 2004. 83
2009 Argiano Suolo - I have changed my mind 180 degrees on Suolo. I used to think it was way overdone but since 2006 something has changed for the better. A mixture of 50 year old vines and 11 year old vines. 100% Sangiovese. Fresh with good balance of fruit and silky tannins. 93
2009 Sassicaia - Class in a bottle. A little tannic now but they are not harsh and appear ripe. Nice finish. Not a great Sass but a darn good one. 93
2009 Fontodi Flaccianello - Class squared. Raspberries and floral (violet) notes dominate the nose. Great structure. A "pure" wine that should age very gracefully. 95
And then 3 additional Brunelli:
2006 Valdicava Madonna del Piano - I remember tasting this wine from botti in March of 2009. At that time, I felt it had a chance to be one of the best wines of the vintage. What I tasted today leads me to believe that I was correct then. This wine is very dark compared to other '06 Riservas. My experience has been that Valdicava is always one of the darkest brunelli every year. The floral notes that I smelled in 2009 have remained and now there is tobacco and leather present as well. MdP seems to always be balanced, with typical acidity, red fruit, and smooth tannins. This is a very structured wine that should age very well. The style is not for everyone but it is a very well made wine. 94-95 points.
2004 Soldera Case Basse Riserva - This is another wine that I tasted twice from botti with Gianfranco himself. He said on both occasions that the '04 and the '83 were the best wines he had made. I tasted the '05 earlier in the week and was put off by the high VA. This wine did not exhibit any of that. If you are a traditionalist you need to spring for a bottle or two of this wine. Priced at 179 Euros in Montalcino, this wine may be worth the tariff. Terrific structure with vibrant red fruits, spices, and a finish that goes on for over a minute. This bottle was from Lot F77 which comes from the Intistieti vineyard. From what I have heard, there were 3 bottlings of this wine. This has lead to some bottle variation. 96 points.
1995 Col d'Orcia Poggio al Vento - This is the second time I have had this wine. This time it was from magnum. The typical rosemary and thyme aromas are the first thing that struck me. Some smokiness and licorice was also present. Layers of fruit remain on the palate and there is a nice minerality that runs through this wine as well. This fast approaching the same level as the 1985 for me. I would say that it should hold together for another 20 years, especially in this format. What an absolute treat. 97-98 points.
LB, thanks again for this update. You have become a prolific writer on this trip!
Interesting to see your preference 'swap' on the Argiano STs. Do you know who is running the estate these days? I have been seriously underwhelmed by their Brunelli as of the mid/late nineties. And saw your positive TN on the other tread. It seems that there have been some changes here.
- life is to short to drink bad wines -
Great notes as usual LB. If the '95 Col D'Orcia ages anything like the '85, this must be a real treat. The '85 was my epiphony wine for aged brunelli.
Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
The winemaker is Danish but consults now all over the world. They have a young Italian winemaker that is pushing for more elegance in the wines. I think they are seeing it with the Suolo and the BdM. Can't say the same for Solengo. I wonder what Giacomo Tachis would say about his creation now?
Thanks for the great notes LB. I wish I were in Montalcino again so I can visit Soldera and pick up a bottle.
Flaccianello seems to be a bargain these days compared to some of the super tuscans.
Have you tasted at Pian Dell'orino or Stella Di Campalto? Those wineries intrigue me and while I haven't bought any bottles yet, was thinking about giving them a shot.
I did not taste the '07 from either of these producers. I have purchased both from the '04 vintage but have not tasted them recently.
Thx for your impressions. I agree with you about the 2009 Flaccianello. Class in a glass. I have a few vintages of the Valdicava Madonna. I will keep some and sell some. Thanks for the TN's.
Life without wine?...... Yeah Right.
The Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living - Socrates
"Wine....offers a greater range for enjoyment and appreciation than possibly any other purely sensory thing which may be purchased" ERNEST HEMINGWAY (1889-1961)
Sorry to hear about the Il Carbonaione. I haven't opened either of mine. Let's hope it was an off bottle, indeed.....
Gosh Longboarder. When I emailed you and said I'd be in Richmond this weekend, and you said you'd be out of town, I didn't realize "out of town" meant "Italy."
Have a safe trip back.
99% of lawyers give the rest of us a bad name.
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