2001 Valdicava Brunello di Montalcino

SKU #1032669 98 points James Suckling

 Wow! This is amazing, a very sexy decadence to this. I am having a hard time believing it is wine. Tons of richness and excitement in this. Wow, again!  (1/ 2011)

98 points Wine Spectator

 *Collectibles* Black hued, with intense aromas of crushed berries and licorice with hints of oak. Full-bodied, with loads of fruit, velvety tannins and a long, long finish. Superb. One of the best Brunellos I have had in a long time. Best after 2010.  (4/ 2006)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The black color the wine had in its youth has begun to recede, yet this remains a rich, almost Amarone-like expression of Sangiovese that achieves an incredible level of density and sheer concentration. According to Abbruzzese the early spring hail reduced yields dramatically, which accounts for the wine’s super-ripe style. I am not sure if yields alone can produce a wine that is this extreme, my guess is that decisions taken in the cellar had an influence as well. Nevertheless, the simple fact remains that this wine is a freak. There is no other wine in the estate’s history - before or after - that even remotely resembles the style of the 2001. This is an outstanding wine...  (1/ 2009)

91 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Saturated medium ruby; atypically dark for sangiovese. Aromas of dark berries, bitter chocolate, gunflint and meat. Large-scaled, fat and sweet, offering a blast of blackberry flavor. This is almost too big for the mouth, but manages to avoid heaviness. Offers good vinosity, but still comes across as a bit youthfully musclebound today. Very impressive wine, but I never would have guessed it was Brunello.  (7/ 2006)

91 points Wine Enthusiast

 Inkjet black and super concentrated, the wine actually delivers fresh fruit and squeezed berry youthfulness. By the looks of it, you’d expect a massive, oaked, tannic beast, but instead are treated to a wine full of creamy coffee and velvety tobacco leaf flavors.  (4/ 2006)

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Varietal:

Sangiovese

- The most widely planted grape in Italy is Sangiovese, a high-acid grape with moderate to high tannins, apparent earthiness and subtle fruit. It is thought to have originated in Tuscany and its name, which translates to "blood of Jove," leads historians to believe it may date all the way back to the Etruscan period, though historical mentions only go as far back as the early 1700s. Though planted all over modern Italy, the most significant wines made from Sangiovese still come from Tuscany: Chianti and Brunello di Montalcino. Sangiovese must make up 75% of a blend from the Chianti DOCG t be labeled as such, traditionally allowing for Canaiolo, Trebbiano and Malvasia for the remainder, though more recently small proportions of Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot have been allowed. In Brunello di Montalcino the wine must be made entirely of Sangiovese. Prugnolo is Montepulciano's name for Sangiovese, and it is used there for the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano wines. In the DOC of Carmignano Sangiovese can be blended with 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. There are also Super Tuscans, IGT wines that blend Sangiovese with large proportions of Cabernet or Merlot. Elsewhere in Italy it is a workhorse grape, though it does find some success (though not the longevity) in the Montefalco and Torgiano wines of Umbria as well as the foundation of Rosso Piceno and a significant element of Rosso Conero from the Marches. Like Nebbiolo, Sangiovese has struggled to find footing outside of Italy, though in recent years California wineries have been having better fortune with grape plantings in the Sierra Foothills/El Dorado County, as well as Sonoma County and the Central Coast.
Country:

Italy

- Once named Enotria for its abundant vineyards, Italy (thanks to the ancient Greeks and Romans) has had an enormous impact on the wine world. From the shores of Italy, the Romans brought grapes and their winemaking techniques to North Africa, Spain and Portugal, Germany, France, the Danube Valley, the Middle East and even England. Modern Italy, which didn't actually exist as a country until the 1870s, once produced mainly simple, everyday wine. It wasn't until the 1970s that Italy began the change toward quality. The 1980s showed incredible efforts and a lot of experimentation. The 1990s marked the real jump in consistent quality, including excellence in many Region that had been indistinct for ages. The entire Italian peninsula is seeing a winemaking revolution and is now one of the most exciting wine Region in the world. For our entire Italian wine selection, click here. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of Italy.
Sub-Region:

Tuscany

Specific Appellation:

Brunello di Montalcino

- Made from 100% Sangiovese grapes from a specific clone called "Brunello" in the town of Montalcino. Situated in the southwestern part of Tuscany the town of Montalcino sits on a ridge about 400 feet above the Eastern plain. This ridge divides the region into three diverse growing areas. The northeastern part produces wines with brighter fruit, more cherry and high tone notes and somewhat leaner body. The southeastern portion often referred to, as the "Golden Triangle" is the home of Biondi Santi, the family who invented Brunello and championed its production for half a century before anyone else. This region produces wines with rich body, deep ripe cherry to plum fruit with lots of earth and spice. The third portion is the southwesterly facing slope which is the warmest (hence the ripest grapes), consistently producing wines with more breadth and richness. At the turn of this century, there were more than 150 growers who produce the 233,000 cases annually from the 2863 acres inscribed to Brunello.