2016 La Torre, Rosso di Montalcino DOC, Tuscany, Italy.
The 2016 is going to be legendary in Tuscany and we are seeing the top wines already getting unbelievably good press, but there are also some killer deals on lesser known wines and especially wines like this gorgeous deep fruited and elegant La Torre Rosso di Montalcino are incredible and offer a wonderful value for much less than their Brunello version. Lighter on its feet than the Brunello(s) the Rosso makes up for in style and grace, it shows a complex array of flavors and a sense of never ending length with a beautiful rose petal perfume and exotic spices. This La Torre has, what it is cliche to say, Burgundy class in the glass with ripe tannins and a gorgeous garnet/ruby hue that seduces the senses with layers of black cherry, raspberry, strawberry and plum fruits to begin on its open and generous palate with gains structure with air as well as highlighting the background elements, mineral notes and light earthiness. Additionally there is classic anise, fine cigar tobacco wrapper, sandalwood and lingering dried flowers and cranberry/currant, making for a lovely Sangiovese wine that gets even better with food, bringing out more depth and fruit intensity. There is almost nothing to fault here and the detailing and mouth feel is exceptional in this remarkable Rosso di Montalcino, this is a wine that needs to be taken out of the “Baby Brunello” box, it is really next level stuff on its own.
The La Torre winery was founded not all that long ago by Italian standards back in 1976 by Giuseppe Ananìa, who purchased the La Torre estate from the famous Ciacci family of Montalcino. Now Luigi Anania, Giuseppe’s son, is the present owner and producer of the wines of La Torre, and the estate is located in the commune of La Sesta, approximately 8 kilometers south of Montalcino, which is in the highest altitude section of the Brunello appellation. La Torre make four main wines, all from organic vines: Brunello di Montalcino (with a Riserva in the best years as well), Rosso di Montalcino, with the Brunello and Rosso being exclusively Sangiovese Grosso (Brunello Clone) by law, as well as a Rosso di Toscano and a Rosso di Toscano “Ampelio” which have touches of Ciliegiolo and Alicante added to a mainline of Sangiovese. The wines are all made from all grapes that are de-stemmed prior to fermentations and only indigenous yeasts are used before a extended 20 maceration on the skins, and these ferments are done in a combination of steel and oak with an 18 month elevage being in large oak casks of French origin, with only about 10% of the ultimate cuvée being aged in small French barrels. Made for more early drinking pleasure and a sublime vintage really show here and I absolute love this stuff, judging it purely on its intent and delivery it is fantastic, drink this brilliantly crafted beauty over the next 3 to 5 years.
($36 Est.) 95 Points, grapelive