~ Castello Banfi, Montalcino ~

In 1992, Castello Banfi planted the Poggio Alle Mura vineyard after over 10 years of Sangiovese clonal research that determined which clones where most properly suited to the vineyard based upon soil composition, elevation and exposition.  Today that vineyard is almost 25 years of age and bearing the best grapes it has ever produced.  

This “maturation” is exemplified by the creation of two additional wines in Castello Banfi’s portfolio. Originally planted to create a unique expression of Brunello only,  in optimal vintages the estate is now producing a second Brunello Riserva and a vineyard designated Rosso di Montalcino.  The result have been impressive. 

~ Sloping hillside vineyards at Castello Banfi promote drainage for the vines ~

The 2013 Poggio Alle Mura Rosso di Montalcino opened my eyes.  I have to admit, while I enjoy Rosso di Montalcino in general,  I don’t often find one that surprises me, but this one did.   
The wine is vinified in Castello Banfi’s hybrid stainless steel and oak fermentors for 7-10 days and then racked to French oak barrique for 12 months.   In fact, the distinction between the Poggio Alle Mura and it’s sibling estate Rosso di Montalcino – other than the fruit source – is the oak aging regimen.  While the estate wine spends 12 months in a combination of barrique and botte, only barrique are used for the Poggio Alle Mura.  
In the glass, the wine is a deep ruby color.    Lovely, expressive and almost delicate aromas lift from the glass with little coaxing.  Floral notes, crushed cherry, spice and fresh herbs form the bouquet that will carry through onto the palate.  In the mouth, the wine is medium to full bodied; there is very nice ripe, weighty fruit to this Rosso.  Vibrant and fresh, with refreshing acidity, the core of cherry fruit is strong but graceful at once.  There are few nits to pick with this.  A really wonderful example of the type.  91 points.  About $24-$28.   

The wine is available at retail,  but a large block of the production is destined for on premise restaurants, etc.  

~ Wine and Peony ~

Buon Fine Settimana!

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