~ Filippo Antonelli in his Cantina ~

Filippo Antonelli is as gentlemanly as they come.  While clearly confident in both his wines and himself, he exudes a certain humility that almost seems at odds with with his personality.  When I spoke with him last, he was excited about the completion of his new winery, located directly beneath his residence.  As we joked – he can literally and figuratively stay on top of his life’s work.  
That work is paying off handsomely.   The 2009 Montefalco Rosso is a wonderful example of his efforts.  A traditionally made rosso that contains 70% Sangiovese, 15% Sagrantino and 15% Merlot, all of which are vinified separately in Antonelli’s new gravity fed winery,  the wine displays a dark ruby color with slight violet tones at the rim. 
Despite the fact that the wine is aged exclusively in large barrels (25 Hectoliter) and then clarified in cement,  I sensed some fresh cedar and spice on the nose that accented the crushed berry and faint plum aromas nicely.  On the palate, the wine is medium bodied. Flavors mostly follow the nose, but a sense of smoked fennel is apparent – if I can describe a flavor profile that doesn’t exist.  Taste the wine and you will see.  6 months bottle aging before release rounds out the tannins nicely – most likely factored into the wine by the Sagrantino in the blend.  The balance is delicately accomplished and other than a desire for a tad more concentration, there’s nothing not to like here.   Well done indeed.  87 points, about $14.

~ Antonelli’s Rosso is 70% Sangiovese, 15% Sagrantino & 15% Merlot ~
This wine will be tasted again as part of my upcoming feature report on the wines of Montefalco.  Salute!
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