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Il Palazzone Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 2010

Sangiovese from Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
  • JS95
  • WE95
  • RP94
  • WS94
14.5% ABV
  • WE93
  • W&S93
  • RP92
  • WS91
  • WE96
  • WS93
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14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Critical Acclaim

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JS 95
James Suckling
So much sweet berry and currant aromas and flavors here with an underlying volcanic salt character. Full body, savory and chewy yet delicious and lively. Drink or hold.
WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
Enticing scents of ripe dark-skinned berry, leafy underbrush, chopped herb, dark spice and a toasted note come together on this structured, poised wine. The delicious, full-bodied palate offers layers of juicy black cherry, crushed raspberry, licorice, mint and a blast of orange peel while firm, velvety tannins provide the polished framework. A coffee note closes the lingering finish. Drink 2019–2028.
RP 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The Il Palazzone 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva walks a fine line between grace and brawn. That not-so-subtle contrast of extremes is the wine's most fascinating characteristic. On the one hand, you have the finessed elegance of the bouquet that emits subtle tones of wild fruit and balsam herb. On the other, you have the very noticeable tightness of the wine's delineated and well-articulated mouthfeel. This is a Brunello with purpose and high ideals, and it reaches all the major milestones it sets out to conquer.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
Sweet cherry and strawberry fruit is an even match for the briar and tobacco notes and granular tannins in this sleek, intense red. Picks up a mineral element and finishes with a vibrant, long aftertaste. Best from 2018 through 2033.
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Il Palazzone

Il Palazzone

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Il Palazzone, Montalcino, Tuscany, Italy
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Il Palazzone, or "The Big Palace" is a small estate that has been producing wine for over ten years. While the estate is roughly 20 acres, the land authorized for the production of Brunello di Montalcino is a mere 10 acres. Obviously, a property of these dimensions creates a tightly controlled environment which is determined by its owner. A New Yorker and a wine lover, not necessarily in that order, the proud owner takes an enormous interest in the vineyard despite the time constrains imposed by his day job as a business man. No care is spared in the entire vinification process, which end result is approximately 20,000 bottles each year.

Located on the western side of Montalcino, the estate is quite high in terms of altitude - roughly 480 meters above sea level. This altitude ensures excellent ventilation which is salutary for grapes, as it reduces mold production to a bare minimum. The constant action of the wind combined with the characteristics of the soil on the western side of Montalcino reinforce the character of the elegant wines produced by the estate. The vines themselves are over twenty years old and have therefore grown long root systems making them more resilient during periods of draught. These deep roots are able to reach minerals and components that and not present in the top soils and enrich the taste and aromas of the wines.

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.

Sangiovese

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The perfect intersection of bright fruit and savory earthiness, Sangiovese is the backbone variety in Tuscany. While it is best known as the chief component of Chianti, it reaches the height of its power and intensity in the complex, long-lived Brunello di Montalcino. Elsewhere throughout Italy, it can make inexpensive wines for daily consumption ranging from inoffensive to deliciously easy. 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 moderate popularity in California and Washington State over the last few decades.

In the Glass

Sangiovese is a medium-bodied red with savory flavors of tart cherry, plum, tomato, fresh tobacco, anise, thyme, oregano, and dried earth. High-quality, well-aged examples will take on notes of smoke, clay pot, leather, gamey meat, potpourri, and dried fruits. 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 grainy tannins create an affinity with tomato-based dishes, spicy meats, and anything off the barbecue.

Sommelier Secret

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

IAT166084_2010 Item# 166084