Fuligni Brunello di Montalcino 1999
"Very fresh aromas of pressed flowers with hints of plums and raspberries. Full-bodied, with super well-knit tannins and a long, long finish of ripe fruit and beautiful character. I love this. This is better than 1997. Get it fast."
-Wine SpectatorHigh standards in the winery match those in the vineyard. Fermentation takes place under the severest temperature and quality control, followed by skin maceration for 15-20 days. The hallmark of Fuligni Brunello and Rosso (the latter, from the rocky and rewarding cru of Ginestreto) is their great complexity. Élevage takes place in Slavonian oak casks and in French barriques and tonneaux, effectively enhancing and fine-tuning the wines intrinsic nobility and depth.
All labels bear the lion of St. Marco in honor of the Fulignis' Venetian origins. The family, however, has long been thoroughly Tuscan, founding the winery in 1923 round a Medici villa and a tiny country convent of the Renaissance. Maria Flora Fuligni and nephew Roberto Guerrini Fuligni have just restored the latter to its sixteenth-century purity. Its cool, cloistered tranquillity supplies ideal aging conditions for these elegantly structured reds, jointly orchestrated by Maria Flora, oenologist Paolo Vagaggini, and agronomist Federico Ricci. Besides this restoration work, the past year has seen further expansion of the vineyards (now 25 productive acres out of the total 247). Altitude varies between 1250-1480 feet above sea level. Exposure is mainly eastern and southeastern, and terrain consists of stony/clayey, hillside "galestro" marls. The soil is low in organic components — therefore conducive to minuscule yields. Crops are further cut back by the vines’ age (12-30 years), their density, severe pruning and green harvest. The newly added vineyards are even more densely planted, 10 to 12 years old and at a slightly lower altitude of 984 feet, on predominantly clayey terrain better suited to Merlot. The grapes are vinified separately according to cru, in a classically inspired international style.