2016 Tenuta Col d’Orcia, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany, Italy.
One of the vintage’s best values and one you should try hard not to miss is Tenuta d’Orcia’s 2016 Brunello di Montalcino, it is proof that the hype was warranted, it is a lovely structured wine with classic Sangiovese layers of brambly blackberriy, plum, dark cherry and earthy mulberry fruits, along with cedar, mint, tobacco, bay leaf, loam and anise. This wine has a mineral note, dried floral tones and well rounded, elegant and ripe tannins with a supple full bodied palate and a long finish, all of which adds to immediate pleasure and will allow for some serious cellar, age worthy, evolution. I can imagine there’s some rewarding life ahead for this Col d’Orcia, which could impress Brunello fans for another two decades, not bad for wine that sells for just fifty bucks, or sometimes less. This deeply hued and lightly perfumed Brunello comes from all organic fruit, which is all hand tended and carefully sorted, both in the vineyard and it the cellar to ensure quality, concentration and true terroir character, which transmits in the finished wine exceptionally well with plenty of complexity and power, I only wish I had a few more bottles tucked away of this impressive Brunello.

Col d’Orcia, which translates to “the hill overlooking the Orcia River”, is one of the original Brunello properties and the largest organic estate in the region, well known for traditional or authentic wines. The Orcia River marks the Southwestren border of the Brunello di Montalcino zone, where there is some volcanic influence in the clay and limestone soils and with warm exposures that adds to the concentration and richness of the Sangiovese Grosso (Brunello Clone) grapes. Col d’Orcia ages their Brunello di Montalcino for a full 3 years in the large barrels, a combination of Slavonian and Allier (French), before bottling and keep the bottles in cellar at least 1 year before releasing it, in keeping with the DOCG rules. It is also interesting too, that through mostly Col d’Orcia’s efforts that in 1983 that Rosso di Montalcino became a full DOC, and their’s is an iconic example.The winery notes, as I’ve mentioned in my prior reviews, the Rosso is made with pure (100%) Sangiovese grapes, released one year after the harvest to retain all the freshness and fruitiness of a young wine, but the 2016 vintage gave an added dimension and density and it is also fabulous, especially good with hearty cuisine. This all, as I noted when I tried the 2016 Rosso, boded well for this 2016 Brunello, which didn’t disappoint, and should go on be a legendary vintage.
($50 Est.) 94 Points, grapelive

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