If you have been delaying or waiting for one Montalcino’s most highly esteemed and classic producers, then do not miss the 2016 ALTESINO Brunello di Montalcino. I have personally been purchasing all of the great vintages since 1990.
Again with splendid and consistent ratings! The 2016 Altesino Brunello di Montalcino has been rated by practically all the major critics across the board at 95 points. WA95+, WS95, JS95, JD 95, DE95, WE 92
Where most of my focus for 2016 has been in the southeastern and southwestern sub-zones of the DOCG, Altesino’s estate and vineyards are located in the cooler and more elevated northeastern hills of Montalcino where most of the Sangiovese is dry farmed in limestone marl….a very important feature, especially for the very dry, and very warm growing season of 2016. Limestone is known to hold moisture better than other soil type, which is beneficial for the vines and affords extra harmony, balance, finesse and class! Although frost and ripening were not problems in 2016, Altesino has wisely invested in prime vineyards in the warmer southern extremes of the DOCG (Castellnuovo dell’Abate (Uccelliera and Ciacci Piccolumini) and Sante’Angelo in Colle (Lisini)) as an insurance policy if a riper or more muscular component is necessary.
Of special note is Altesino’s most famous, “golden” hilltop Montosoli vineyard situated at a lofty 1,200 to 1,500 feet above sea level. Not only is this one of Italy’s most renown vineyards, it is the DOCG’s only true Grand Cru vineyard, although some would now advocate San Filippo’s Le Lucere equal consideration (Montosoli ’16 is sold out).
“Balsamic aromas of wild thyme, juniper, eucalyptus and pine lead off, with cherry and plum fruit at the core. There’s latent energy that’s restrained for now by the grip of tannins, yet this is lithe and nimble despite the solid structure. Best from 2024 through 2045.” – 95 points, Wine Spectator (June 2021)
Bold cherry, dried raspberry and myrtle add to the intensity and the brightness of the bouquet. The Altesino 2016 Brunello di Montalcino displays a lively and fruit-forward ensemble with an infectious and cheerful sense of energy. This is a tonic and crisp expression of Sangiovese with lifted berry aromas backed by subtle spice, tar and licorice gained over two years of barrel aging. This is a 110,000-bottle release (and a good buy for Brunello). 2024-2042. – 95+ points, Wine Advocate (ML) – November 2020
“Fresh violet, forest-floor and some pear-skin aromas, underneath brambleberries. Fresher style of Brunello. It’s medium-bodied with silky tannins and a great balance between fresh-fruit and forest flavors. Drink after 2023.” – 95 points, James Suckling.com – November 2020
WS-Wine Spectator, WA-Wine Advocate/Robert Parker, JS-James Suckling, JD-Jeb Dunnuck, WE-Wine Enthusiast, DE-Decanter