You may have heard chatter that some producers of the well-respected wine from Italy, Brunello di Montalcino, are doing what no self-respecting Brunello producer would do -- using grapes from outside of the region of Montalcino in Tuscany, including foreign grapes such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon. True Brunello di Montalcino is made from 100% Sangiovese grapes and the name translates literally to “Brunello (a nickname of sorts for Sangiovese) from Montalcino.”
The American government, concerned about the fleecing of U.S. consumers, has scheduled a meeting with the Italian Agricultural Minister to try and work out a resolution before instituting an outright import ban on the wine.
Considering Americans throw back approximately 25% of all the Brunello on the market, the Italians may want to skip the aperitivo and get right to the bargaining table.
Vino Girl, my girlfriend and I are planning a trip to Siena and Montalcino at the end of the month. We're huge fans of big reds and are curious to figure out the best resource(s) for setting up tasting/tour appointments in the area as well as for identifying some of the "smaller/local" superstars that may not make it to the US. Any thoughts on: 1) your top 3 "absolutely MUST SEE" wineries in the Chiant/Montalcino area (either because of the tour/tasting experience or the quality of the wine and 2) what the best way is to secure tour/tasting appointments (email direct to winery??). Thanks so much!!ReplyDelete