Following on from the exceptional Brunello di Montalcino 2010 releases earlier in the year, we are delighted to offer a pre-release on the first of the hotly awaited 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Riservas. Today we have secured a parcel of the incredible Poggio alle Mura Riserva 2010, which Suckling has awarded 99 points and proclaimed the ‘Greatest Banfi red ever’. We can offer this at the extremely appealing price of £250 per case of six. In addition to this, we are also pleased to offer Banfi’s prestigious Single Vineyard wine, Poggio all’Oro Riserva. This rare collector’s item is only produced in exceptional vintages and in tiny quantities.
Brunello di Montalcino Riservas are released in only the finest vintages and spend a sixth year at the Estate compared to the five years for the Brunello di Montalcino ‘normales’. Furthermore, the finest selection of grapes are used to make the Riserva, using only the finest plots. As such, they are of a superior quality to the already exceptional 2010 ‘normales’.
Poggio alle Mura, 99 Points, 6×75 – £250 IB
Castello Banfi’s Alle Mura Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG uses the finest grapes from the Poggio alle Mura vineyards, which slope down from the historic Poggio alle Mure Castle and are the crowning glory of the Estate. The hillside here rests at an altitude of 210-220 metres above sea level. The soil is special, combining sandy topsoil, abounded with calcareous matter and covered with rounded rocks, it also has elements of sea sediment originating from the Pliocene age. The viniculture closely matches that of their standard Brunello di Montalcino, except maceration is extended by five days and 90% of the wine is aged for two years in French oak. The Riserva then undergoes extensive bottle ageing at the Estate and is released six years after the harvest.
Suckling has awarded the Riserva Poggio alle Mura Brunello 2010 with 99 points, just one point away from perfection. At £250 per case of six there are few other wines that can offer such exceptional value, regardless of style or region. It is also noteworthy that James Suckling gave 100 points to Casanova di Neri Tenuta Nuove Brunello di Montalcino 2010, which trades at over £500. It pays to buy on pre-release as this will be in extremely high demand once it is released physically to market.
Poggio all’Oro, 97 Points, 6×75 – £390 IB
Banfi’s Poggio all’Oro is a Single Vineyard Riserva and as such they never make a ‘normale’; it is only produced in the finest vintages. Located on the Southern slopes, the vineyard is particularly favoured for its micro-climate; in perfect vintages Banfi believe Sangiovese to grow to absolute perfection. The hillside is even higher than that of the Poggio alle Mura vineyards at an altitude of 250 metres above sea level. The viniculture is again similar to that of the Banfi Brunello di Montalcino and Poggio alle Mura Riserva, however the Poggio all’Oro is aged for 30 months in French oak barriques. Again, there is extensive bottle ageing at the Estate and collectors can get hold of this rare Single Vineyard release 6 years after the harvest.
Suckling has awarded the all’Oro 97 points, which is one of the highest ever scores for this special wine. Production is tiny and we are delighted to give readers the chance to obtain it on pre-release. It is expected to sell out almost immediately upon becoming physical next year. A real collector’s item.
A History of the Estate
Castello Banfi was founded in 1978 by brothers, John and Harry Mariani, the owners of the U.S. wine importer Banfi Vintners. Their goal was to combine the privileged micro-climatic position of the vineyards surrounding the iconic Banfi castle, with state of the art technology and science. Together, the Mariani family and Ezio Rivella, one of Italy’s foremost oenologists, selected this site for the richness of the soils and its great capacity for development. The constellation of wonderfully positioned vineyards are found around the Medieval castle, covering 2,380 hectares, one third of the estate. Upon purchasing the estate the family begun several research projects, the foremost of these was focused on clonal selection. In the 1980’s Banfi teamed up with the University of Milan to research 600 clones. This led to the production of a clonal blend, which utilises clones Janus 50, 10 and BF 30 to provide a wine with open and elegant fruit while retaining enormous ageing potential.
The Sangiovese grape is the beating heart of Tuscan wine and the symbol of Montalcino. Through attentive clonal selection the Estate mastered its versatility in the historic Brunello denomination. Today six of the 45 registered clones of Sangiovese are from Castello Banfi and they focus on the aforementioned three clones which have been isolated and planted to take advantage of the variability of the soil in Montalcino.
6×75 - £390 IB or £314.76 incl duty and VAT
James Suckling, 99 Points
This is very tannic and powerful with blueberry, blackberry and milk chocolate. Full body, firm tannins and a long and flavorful finish. Shows length and power. A wine for decades ahead. Greatest Banfi red ever. Better in 2018. Drink 2020 -2037
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