Castello Romitorio Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 2004
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Since 1984, the Castello Romitorio winery has been committed to the study, exploration and promotion of Brunello di Montalcino wine. This has been possible thanks to the work of Italian artist Sandro Chia, and his bond with Franco Martini, a Brunello di Montalcino expert and the cellar master of Castello Romitorio. This bond now continues between Sandro’s son Filippo and Franco’s son Stefano, the next generation.
The team has an intimate knowledge of the land and an immense respect for local heritage and tradition, which allows Castello Romitorio to express the essence of Brunello di Montalcino. The agricultural practices are low impact and take into consideration the nature that surrounds us. They interact with the indigenous flora and fauna in order to capture and develop the subtle nuances that exist in both the land and the vines they have the privilege to cultivate.
Famous for its bold, layered and long-lived red, Brunello di Montalcino, the town of Montalcino is about 70 miles south of Florence, and has a warmer and drier climate than that of its neighbor, Chianti. The Sangiovese grape is king here, as it is in Chianti, but Montalcino has its own clone called Brunello.
The Brunello vineyards of Montalcino blanket the rolling hills surrounding the village and fan out at various elevations, creating the potential for Brunello wines expressing different styles. From the valleys, where deeper deposits of clay are found, come wines typically bolder, more concentrated and rich in opulent black fruit. The hillside vineyards produce wines more concentrated in red fruits and floral aromas; these sites reach up to over 1,600 feet and have shallow soils of rocks and shale.
Brunello di Montalcino by law must be aged a minimum of four years, including two years in barrel before realease and once released, typically needs more time in bottle for its drinking potential to be fully reached. The good news is that Montalcino makes a “baby brother” version. The wines called Rosso di Montalcino are often made from younger vines, aged for about a year before release, offer extraordinary values and are ready to drink young.
Among Italy's elite red grape varieties, Sangiovese has the perfect intersection of bright red fruit and savory earthiness and is responsible for the best red wines of Tuscany. While it is best known as the chief component of Chianti, it is also the main grape in Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and reaches the height of its power and intensity in the complex, long-lived Brunello di Montalcino. Somm Secret—Sangiovese doubles under the alias, Nielluccio, on the French island of Corsica where it produces distinctly floral and refreshing reds and rosés.