There I sat yesterday morning, reviewing various news feeds with my morning espresso, when I saw that Brunello legend Franco Biondi Santi had passed away at the age of 91. Biondi Santi is largely credited with making Brunello what it is today. He shaped the wine, cultivated some of the original clones, and recognized that Sangiovese in Montalcino was special. The legacy he forged will last forever.
I wanted to offer “un omaggio” to the grande uomo last night with a toast before dinner. I’ve had Biondi Santi Brunello many times and although I don’t have any in my cellar at the moment, I pensively suggested that Biondi Santi “was” Brunello, and so I opened a wine that reminded me of him in many ways: traditional, classic, time honored.
The 2006 Il Palazzone Brunello was decanted 90 minutes before dinner. Surprisingly a small sediment was removed. In the decanter, the wine is dark crimson with violet reflections. Slightly lighter in the glass. The nose is striking and perfumed with flowers, chestnuts, dried herbs and crushed cherries. It’s so pretty to smell. On the palate, the wine gained considerable weight from the time it was opened until it was placed on the dinner table. So if you’re going to try this now, decant it. Classic and restrained in style, there are asian spices, slightly tart cherries, sandalwood and toasted nuts that mingle together nicely and provide a single woven flavor sensation. A classy wine. An apt choice. 93 points.
We offered a toast, we savored casually, and yes, somewhat introspectively. The notion of Traditional can be fleeting, but Tradition remains.
|The 2006 Il Palazzone Brunello di Montalcino
April 8, 2013