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Mastrojanni Rosso di Montalcino 2000
Tasting Notes: Robust, fruity example with real concentration and depth. Ripe berry fruits and slightly firm tannins - a little softer, fuller with three to five years' age.
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.
One of the most iconic Italian regions for wine, scenery and history, Tuscany is the world’s most important outpost for the Sangiovese grape. Ranging in style from fruity and simple to complex and age-worthy, as well as in price from budget-friendly to ultra-premium, Sangiovese makes up a significant percentage of plantings here, with the white Trebbiano Toscano coming in second.
Within Tuscany, many esteemed wines have their own respective sub-zones, including Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. The climate is Mediterranean and the topography consists mostly of picturesque rolling hills, scattered with vineyards.
Sangiovese at its simplest produces straightforward pizza-friendly wines with bright red fruit and not much more, but at its best it shows remarkable complexity. Top-quality Sangiovese-based wines can be expressive of a range of characteristics such as sour cherry, balsamic, dried herbs, leather, fresh earth, dried flowers, anise and tobacco. Brunello expresses well the particularities of vintage variations and is thus popular among collectors who like to cellar the same wine over multiple years. Chianti is associated with tangy and food-friendly dry wines at various price points. A more recent phenomenon as of the 1970s is the “Super Tuscan”—a wine made from international grape varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah, with or without Sangiovese. These are common in Tuscany’s coastal regions like Bolgheri, Val di Cornia, Carmignano and the island of Elba.
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.