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Conti Costanti Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 2012

Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
  • WE100
  • V98
  • W&S97
14% ABV
Other Vintages
  • WE98
  • W&S96
  • RP95
  • WS93
  • JS95
  • RP94
  • WE94
  • WS92
  • RP94
  • V95
  • RP94
  • WE92
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14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Deep ruby red with aromas of plums, smoke, and coffee. Graceful tannins and a beautiful finish. This wine is complex and austere. This wine is complex and will undoubtedly benefit from further bottle age, peaking in 5-10 years’ time. Top vintages will also have top longevity.

Critical Acclaim

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WE 100
Wine Enthusiast
Heady scents of chopped herbs, woodland berry, forest floor, new leather, dark spice and violet are just some of the aromas you'll find on this fragrant wine. It's savory and loaded with finesse, delivering juicy Marasca cherry, raspberry compote, licorice, orange zest and pipe tobacco alongside firm yet polished tannins and fresh acidity. A tangy mineral note graces the lingering finish. It's still young and needs plenty of time to fully unwind and develop. Drink 2027–2042.
Cellar Selection
V 98
Vinous
Vivid deep red. Musky, deep, mineral-tinged aromas of red cherry, violet and crystallized orange peel. Sweet, lush and packed with red fruit, blood orange nectar and savory underbrush flavors; a step up in sheer size from Costanti’s 2013 Brunello. At once powerful and refined, this seriously saturates the palate with flavor, vibrant minerality and noble tannins. This is everything a great Brunello ought to be.
W&S 97
Wine & Spirits
A historic estate located just east of the town of Montalcino, Conti Costanti delivered a gorgeous riserva in 2012. The flavors of red and black cherry are fresh and vibrant for this warm vintage, the flavors cooled by firm, ferrous tannins. The wine aged for 18 months in French oak tonneaux, followed by another year and a half in large Slavonian casks, allowing the flavors to knit together. Notes of coriander and clove amp up the fruit tones, adding verve to the polished, velvety texture. The finish is long and energetic as the flavors continue expanding long after the wine is gone.
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Conti Costanti

Conti Costanti

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Conti Costanti, Italy
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The small town of Montalcino, huddled around its fortressed castle on the Tuscan hillside, is miniature perfection. Montalcino residents are a tightly knit community, with a strong sense of identity and deep love for their territory. Within this community, Andrea Costanti is a well known and highly liked figure. The Costanti family has been part of Montalcino history since 1555, yet Andrea is anything but 'old hat': young, brilliant and amiable, he very much moves with the times. You will find him perfectly at ease in Tuscany as in New York, in Paris or in Tokyo. In 1983, Andrea (at the time, fresh out of Siena University's geology department) took over from his uncle, Count Emilio – the man who first put Costanti on the wine map. A difficult task: yet this inexperienced youth not only coped with his huge new responsibilities, but actually upgraded and enhanced the family's reputation for making great Brunello. He achieved this by relying on his own fine instinct for wine and in-depth knowledge of the terrain's geological components. In time, these natural skills were perfected, so that he eventually styled the range together with Vittorio Fiore. Roughly 25 acres are under vine and vine age ranges from 6 to 25 years old. Soil type is classic Tuscan "galestro" (shale marls from the Cretaceous Era, formed by a mixture of sand and calcareous rock with very little clay).

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Montalcino

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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.

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Sangiovese

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The perfect intersection of bright red fruit and savory earthiness, Sangiovese is among Italy's elite red grape varieties 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

Elsewhere throughout Italy, Sangiovese plays an important role in many easy-drinking, value-driven red blends and on the French island of Corsica, under the name Nielluccio, it produces excellent bright and refreshing red and rosé wines with a personality of their own. Sangiovese has also enjoyed success growing in California and Washington.

In the Glass

Sangiovese is a medium-bodied red with qualities of tart cherry, plum, sun dried tomato, fresh tobacco and herbs. High-quality, well-aged examples can take on tertiary notes of smoke, leather, game, potpourri and dried fruit. Corsican Nielluccio is distinguished by a subtle perfume of dried flowers.

Perfect Pairings

Sangiovese is the ultimate pizza and pasta red—its high acidity, moderate alcohol, and fine-grained tannins create a perfect symbiosis with tomato-based dishes, braised vegetables, roasted and cured meat, hard cheese and anything off the barbecue.

Sommelier Secret

Although it is the star variety of Tuscany, cult-classic “Super-Tuscan” wines may actually contain no Sangiovese at all! Since the 1970s, local winemakers have been producing big, bold wines as a blend of one or more of several international varieties—usually Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot or Syrah—with or without Sangiovese.

PIN920040_2012 Item# 421110