Italian wines - Brunello di Montalcino: the world-renowned red wine
Brunello di Montalcino is a red wine of Guaranteed and Controlled Designation of Origin produced in the territory of Montalcino, in Tuscany. It’s undoubtedly one of the most popular red wines, both in Italy and in the rest of the world, and its limited production ensures its exceptional quality. Brunello di Montalcino is made exclusively with Sangiovese grapes from the Montalcino area. It’s also essential that all the operations of winemaking, aging, storage and bottling occur in said area. This wine requires a long period of aging before it can be sold. It usually requires five years of aging, counting from the harvest; during that time it specifically needs to age in oak barrels for at least two years, followed by a four months period of aging in bottle. The higher the aging, the better the quality of the wine. The bottle of wine must be stored away from light, which may damage the wine, and must be maintained at a temperature and humidity as constant as possible, in order to prevent oxygen infiltration. Brunello di Montalcino has a clear and bright appearance, characterized by a ruby red hue. With the aging process, the wine tends to assume a shade of garnet. Its aroma is intense and persistent, with a fruity and vanilla-like aftertaste, but it also presents hints of aromatic wood and undergrowth. The taste is rich, warm and strong, lean on the palate. Due to its rich texture, Brunello di Montalcino is a perfect accompaniment to very complex and elaborate dishes. This wine is great served with red meats, game, stews and grills, even in the presence of sauces. The Brunello is also a good match to strong cheeses such as spicy pecorino, tangy gorgonzola and parmesan cheese. By virtue of its characteristics, it is also a perfect accompaniment to conversation and meditation. The quality of the wine can significantly vary depending on the year in which it was produced. Climatic factors such as rainfall, temperature and temperature fluctuation are proved to be extremely important for the success of the final product. Among the vintages years that have been considered exceptional, the ones that stand out are: 1945, 1955, 1961, 1964, 1970, 1975, 1985, 1988 and 1990, 1995, 1997, 2004 and 2006. According to forecasts for wines currently in aging, 2010 is also expected to be on this list.