2010 Poggio Antico "Altero" Brunello di Montalcino

SKU #1216380 96 points James Suckling

 I love the subtle aromas of rose petal, dark fruit and perfume that follow through to a full body, with fine tannins and a beautiful finish. It's very fine and pretty. Savory and delicate. Such finesse here. Drink or hold.  (12/2014)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Bright, with cherry and raspberry flavors, edged by spice and a hint of wild herbs. Fresh and linear in profile, but lacks some complexity. Fine length. Best from 2017 through 2028. (BS)  (6/2015)


 Super-ripe black cherries, espresso, mocha, cloves, lavender, licorice and French oak are some of the notes that inform the estate's Brunello di Montalcino Altero. In this vintage, the French oak overpowers the fruit and marks the wine to a significant degree. Here, the house style has clearly been forced upon the vintage. Today, the Altero remains compact through the mid-palate and finish. I am not sure the fruit will ever emerge. The 2010 spent two years in 500L French oak barrels. (AG)  (2/2015)

Wine Enthusiast

 Oak, espresso and toast aromas jump out of the glass. The tightly wound palate delivers plum cake, roasted coffee bean, oak extract, licorice, a confectionary note and licorice but not much fruit richness. Raspy wood tannins provide the framework. (KO)  (5/2015)

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Price: $74.99

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By: John Downing | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 7/4/2016 | Send Email
Altero is Poggio Antico's answer to the demand for a more modern style Brunello and the 2010 is without doubt one of their best ever. The wine is aged for two years in French oak Tonneaux barrels as opposed to three years in large casks like the classic style Brunello. Altero is rich, round and flavorful with exceptional balance and length and perfectly integrated oak. Although it's delicious now, it will only improve with time in the cellar. Definitely one of the top 2010s.

By: Greg St. Clair | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 9/1/2015 | Send Email
Poggio Antico comes from one of the highest vineyards in Montalcino and the ethereal fragrance in this wine is just amazing. The fruit is a combination of savory wild cherry, hints of leather, spice, smoke and a bit of porcini. On the palate the wine has body, richness but it is the balance and length that stretch out and gives this wine such an elegant mouth feel. The finish just seems to go on and on, so balanced, so flavorful, one of the Best of the vintage.
Drink from 2015 to 2030

Additional Information:



- 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.


- 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.


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.