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Mastrojanni Brunello di Montalcino Vigna Loreto 2008
Critical AcclaimAll Vintages
Intertwining iridescent geologies: clays, millenary cobblestone debris, tuffs and sandstones. The strong salinity of the ground and the temperature range must be carefully understood. The climate is influenced by Mount Amiata, an ancient extinct volcano that stands high above the horizon with its 1 mile height. The estate stretches over 240 acres, 80 of which are cultivated with vines, 42 for Brunello, with vineyards from 8 to 41 years old. The altitude of the vineyards varies from 620 to 1340 feet high. The vine exposure is towards the south-east, with more and less steep slopes.
Sangiovese dominates in the vineyard, being the absolute protagonist of Mastrojanni wines. It is present in the Brunello, the Rosso, in the cru Loreto and in the cru Schiena d’Asino; the latter produced only in extraordinary vintages. With a pinch of imagination and fun, the winery created a "Supertuscan" IGT San Pio, a harmonious blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Sangiovese. To conclude with a sweet ending, the Moscadello of Montalcino late harvest Botrys, their golden nectar, a blend of Muscat, Malvasia di Candia and Sauvignon Blanc.
A strong identity, coherence and consistency in quality: these are the values that Mastrojanni has created and cultivated over the years and which enabled the company to stand out among more than 200 wine producers of the Consortium of Brunello di Montalcino wines, with its original and high-quality profile. These values are the result of a passionate, proud and respectful interpretation of nature, tradition and history of the territory.
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 Chianti. The Sangiovese grape is responsible for both Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti but Montalcino has its own clone, which the locals call Brunello.
The Brunello vineyards of Montalcino blanket the rolling hills surrounding the village, which fan out at various elevations. The variations of elevation and soils create Brunellos of different styles. From the valleys with deeper deposits of clay, the wines are typically bolder and deeper in color with more opulent black fruit. These wines tend to take better to aging in some percentage of new French oak barrels. The hillside wines and vineyards at higher elevations 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. These, in general, may be aged in larger and more traditional oak casks
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.
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.
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.
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.