~ Winemaking can be increasingly modern and technological. But sometimes, old school is the best method! ~
Famiglia Falesco…. So says the writing on the labels of the wine.  When your brother is the creator of Solaia and the head winemaker for Antinori,  and you consult for some of the greatest wineries across Italy, chances are you know how to make wine;  and the Cotarella brothers certainly do.  
The Falesco winery was founded in 1979 and for ten years the brothers worked feverishly preparing the estate and cellars until in 1989, they released their first wine,  the white from Lazo: Est! Est! Est!  The creation of the estate’s flagship, Montiano, a pure Merlot, began in 1990 with the plantings in Lazio and the first vintage was released in 1993.   It has become the family’s signature wine and is a perennial Tre Bicchieri recipient.  

~ Renzo (l) and Riccardo Cotarella ~

Today we’ve pulled a Montiano from the Cellar.  I think over the years I’ve tasted every vintage of Montiano produced and at varying degrees of age.  This wine is a wonderful value.  The price has remained steady for several years and given the quality of the wine,  its ability to drink well young while retaining the pedigree for aging;  it’s worth every penny. 

The 2007 Montiano is a deep, blackish purple.  It doesn’t look anything like a 10 year old wine.  I decanted the wine for about an hour, mostly to remove sediment, but as it turned out, there was none.  
In the glass, the wine has luscious aromas of black plums, spices, toast, flowers and mint.  I know some criticize Riccardo Cotarella for his use of oak, but the touch here is deft.   On the palate, the wine is silky and vibrant with black plums, minty tobacco, cedar and spice comprising the core of the flavors with an ever so faint accent of tobacco.  Polished and long, the body is subtlely full and well balanced with fresh acidity.   Montiano is fermented in stainless steel and then aged in French barrique for 12 months before 6 months in bottle prior to release.  I’d buy this wine blind in every vintage.  It has never let me down.  93 points.  About $38-$40.  

~ Montiano is 100% Merlot from Lazio ~ 


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