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Castello Banfi Poggio all'Oro Brunello di Montalcino Riserva DOCG is made from 100% Sangiovese.
Forest floor, grilled herb and pipe-tobacco aromas lead the way on this firmly structured wine. The full-bodied palate offers dried cherry, steeped prune, orange zest and licorice set against tightly knit close-grained tannins. Drink 2022–2032.
-Wine Enthusiast 94 points
Castello Banfi is a family-owned vineyard estate and winery located in the Brunello region of Tuscany. This award-winning estate was founded on the philosophy of blending tradition with innovation, and is recognized as a pioneer in elevating the standards of Italian winemaking.
Dedication to excellence has won the approval of aficionados the world over. Capturing honor after prestigious honor, Castello Banfi is a constellation of single vineyards encompassing over three dozen varying subsoils. The estate is renowned for its clonal research that allows noble grape varieties to thrive in their optimal terroir, creating not only a consistently outstanding Brunello, but the ultimate expression of Montalcino Super Tuscans.
Banfi is a private concern, founded in New York in 1919 by John Mariani, Sr. and today owned and operated by his granddaughter, Cristina Mariani-May. The company is focused on the production and import of wine.
Banfi Vintners is the sole U.S. importer of the Mariani family’s internationally renowned wine estates in Italy — Castello Banfi of Montalcino, Tuscany, and Banfi Piemonte of Strevi, Piedmont — as the exclusive agent for the family’s domestic properties from the Northwest: Pacific Rim, Rainstorm, Silver Totem and Thick Skinned . Banfi is also the importer of Natura wines, from Emiliana Organic Vineyards in Chile.
When he established the company on Spring Street in the heart of New York’s Little Italy, John Mariani, Sr. named the company after an aunt, Teodolinda Banfi, a woman of eclectic tastes who supervised his early education and greatly influenced his views toward fine wines. Until her retirement, she had served as head of the household staff of the late Pope Pius XI, and is distinguished as the first lay person ever to hold that post.
Tuscany’s most honored vineyard estate, Castello Banfi’s award-winning wines are exported to over 90 countries around the world. Lauded for groundbreaking research on the Sangiovese vine to produce superior Brunello and super Tuscan wines; producing healthy, more organic wines that are low in sulfites and histamines; and developing cutting edge winemaking techniques, Castello Banfi is the first winery in the world to be awarded international recognition for exceptional environmental, ethical and social responsibility (ISO 14001 and SA8000) as well as an international leader in customer satisfaction (ISO 9001:2000). Castello Banfi is a beacon for hospitality in the region, with a full service enoteca, glass museum, winery tours, informal La Taverna for lunch, fine dining at La Sala dei Grappoli, and luxury rooms and suites at the highly acclaimed Castello Banfi – Il Borgo.
Banfi Piemonte is the name of the family’s sparkling wine cellars in Strevi, Piedmont, run in conjunction with the nearby single-vineyard estates of Principessa Gavia and Rosa Regale.
Banfi’s success has enabled the company to play a broad philanthropic role through the Banfi Foundation. The Foundation provided seed money to help Catholic Relief Services build a technical school and an orphanage as well as an 800-unit housing project in Potenza, Italy, where thousands were left homeless after a devastating earthquake in the early 1980s. It also generously endows select charities and universities around the world, and sponsors annual scholastic tours to study the food and wine culture of Italy.
Banfi is led today by the founder’s granddaughter Cristina Mariani-May, who is president and CEO. Her father, Chairman Emeritus Dr. John F. Mariani, continues as active counsel to the executive committee and is a member of the firm’s advisory board. Banfi’s world headquarters is a 60-room Elizabethan manor located on a 127-acre estate and vineyard in Old Brookville, New York.
A ruby red garnet color, ripe fruit aromas, dried fruits, hints of licorice and scents of vanilla. Robust and harmonious in the mouth, a rich texture. The wine is only produced in the best vintages.
The grapes are coming from a vineyard planted at 400 meters above sea level. The soil is mainly marl and limestone.
The density of vines per hectare is 5,000 plants, which is equivalent to 2,000 vines per acre.
The pruning technique used is cordon
The grapes used are 100% Sangiovese grosso
Alcoholic fermentation was done in tank, while the Malo-Lactic fermentation was carried in oak barrels.
Wine was then aged for one year in big French oak barrels and 3 years in Slavonian oak barrels.
"With only 1,000 bottles produced, the 2012 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is a precious wine that might prove difficult to locate. This is a dark and syrupy expression with black fruit aromas of blackberry preserves and prune. You definitely taste the warmth and sunshine in this hot-vintage Sangiovese. The bouquet is intense and rich, but the wine is not as long-lived in terms of mouthfeel. This is a wine of immediate power and volume. - Monica Larner"
- Robert Parker's Wine Advocate (Issue #235, February 2018), 92 points
"Medium dark red. High-pitched red berry and floral aromas, plus a hint of underbrush and smoked beef adding weight. Shows good depth and spicy red fruit character in the mouth, featuring a creamy texture and flourishes of cinnamon and mocha. The finish showcases lingering red fruit and savory elements. Much deeper and more interesting than Poggio Nardone’s disappointing 2013 Brunello. - Ian D'Agata"
- Antonio Galloni's Vinous (April 2018), 91 points
"Deep cherry flavors darken into tones of tobacco and damp leaves as this robust Brunello is exposed to air. Layers of black spice and grilled meat add dimension, the flavors warmed by ample alcohol.”
- Wine & Spirits Magazine (April 2019), 91 pts
Poggio San Polo Podernovi Brunello di Montalcino is made from Sangiovese.
Intense ruby red in color with garnet hues, clear and glossy. The bouquet exhibits typical aromas of violets and small red berries. Subtle nuances of forest undergrowth, aromatic wood, a touch of vanilla and jammy mixed fruit then give way to subtle hints of coffee. This Brunello is intense, persistent, broad and heady. Full-bodied and warm on the palate, with a densely-woven texture and robust body, it has a persistent finish with well-rounded tannins. The particular features of the terroir at San Polo produce a Brunello with a capacity for lengthy aging, while patient cellaring enhances the wine during ageing in the bottle.
Lovely purity of fruit with ultra fine tannins and depth, finesse and complexity. Black cherries, cedar and some flowers. It’s full-bodied with very fine tannins that drive the finish. Give it a year or two to open more, but already so enticing. Drink or hold.
-James Suckling 96 Points
The San Polo 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva (with 8,000 bottles produced) is a textured wine with hearty fruit and touches of smoked meat and spice. At its core, the wine offers dark fruit, blackberry and ripe plum. The rich fruitiness of the wine cedes to campfire ash, mahogany and furniture wax. These results are sultry and even a bit flashy, with distant background tones of teriyaki and plum sauce. The wine is fermented in cylindrical oak fermenters and aged in oak for three years. We'll see this bottle hitting the market sometime after February 2021.
-Wine Advocate 95 Points
Pinone Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is made from 100% Sangiovese.
Deep ruby-red with garnet hues. Intense fresh aromas of cherries and raspberry. Full, round and silky with aromas of blackberry and plum. Full-bodied and elegant with fine tannins and spicy oak notes in the finish.
Average age of the vines is 20 years.
Wine went through malolactic fermetation.
It was slightly filtered before bottling.
Pasta with meat sauce, red meats and game.
"This shows wonderful precision and focus on the nose with dried flowers, crushed stones and dark-berry character. Full body, firm and chewy tannins and a long and intense finish. Some pine needles and dried spices on the finish. Needs time to soften. Try in 2021."
- James Suckling (April 2018), 94 pts
"Pinino dates back to 1874, when it was established by Tito Costani beneath the Montosoli hill. Today it is co-owned by an Austrian couple and a Spanish couple, working with consulting oenologist Paolo Vagaggini. Touches of flint and incense counter more overt notes of balsamic herbs and dark cherry. Silky, layered tannins build on the palate to become surprisingly powerful. This will need a couple of years before approaching. Drinking Window 2020 - 2032."
- Decanter (February 2018), 91 pts
Poggio San Polo Podernovi Brunello di Montalcino is made from 100 percent Sangiovese.
Podernovi, San Polo’s new single vineyard Brunello, makes its debut with the extraordinary 2015 vintage. Crafted with Sangiovese grapes grown in the vineyard synonymous with the wine, it is among the most beautiful and archetypal of Montalcino. Podernovi is an elegant and poignant Brunello.
The winter was not particularly cold, and spring arrived slightly earlier than usual, with temperatures slightly above average, giving the vines’ shoots the opportunity to uniformly develop. The following weeks saw frequent rainfall, which allowed the land to build water reserves, alternating with periods of dry weather, enabling the vines to continue growing without any problems. The damp conditions during flowering led to the formation of bunches that were slightly more sparse than usual and with rather small berries, ideal preconditions for reaching harvest time with perfectly ripe and healthy grapes. However, the feature that will make vintage 2016 particularly memorable is the excellent temperature range that characterized the months of July, August and September, with sunny days and cool, breezy nights. We therefore reached the beginning of October with grapes that exhibited a superb combination of maturity, acidity and aromatic potential, perfect conditions for the production of wines with a distinct personality and a great balance of concentration, elegance and longevity; a perfect reflection of the production philosophy of San Polo.
A mix of wild herb, Tuscan scrub, rose, cherry and earth flavors mark this sleek red, which tiptoes between elegance and power, with a layer of chalky tannins underlying it all. With air, the ripe cherry and plum fruit comes forward. Best from 2025 through 2047. 100 cases imported.
-Wine Spectator 95 Points
Aromas of forest floor, grilled herb, camphor and pipe tobacco mingle on the nose of this full-bodied red. The firm, elegantly structured palate offers juicy Marasca cherry, red currant, licorice and coffee bean. Tightly wound, fine-grained tannins and fresh acidity grip the close and lend an ageworthy structure. Drink 2026–2041.
-Wine Enthusiast 95 Points Cellar Selection
Delicately perfumed and finessed, the San Polo 2016 Brunello di Montalcino Podernovi is very floral and lifted in personality. This vintage is very different than the inaugural 2015 vintage. I remember the previous release for its darker and blacker quality of fruit. This cooler vintage is more lithe and lighthearted, with building aromatic intensity that unfolds with caution and care. Once you've had the wine in your glass, it reveals a succession of sour cherry, wild rose and fresh lavender bud. There are light mineral dustings as well, and the wine is ultimately quite solid and structured. This bodes well for its aging evolution. Fruit comes from a two-hectare parcel in a cool and high position some 450 meters above sea level. The soils are clayey with schistous Galestro. Production is 13,000 bottles.
-Wine Advocate 95+ Points
A mix of wild herb, Tuscan scrub, rose, cherry and earth flavors mark this sleek red, which tiptoes between elegance and power, with a layer of chalky tannins underlying it all. With air, the ripe cherry and plum fruit comes forward. Best from 2025 through 2047. 100 cases imported. –BS
-James Suckling 95 Points
This is a phenomenal new red from San Polo with superb depth and intensity with plum, wet earth and black truffle. Full body. Chewy and ripe tannins and a long and flavorful finish. The depth and beautiful is gorgeous. Needs three or four years to come together. Better after 2022.
-Flastaff 95 Points
Tenute Silvio Nardi Poggio Doria is made from 100 percent Sangiovese.
Ruby red color with garnet highlights. Ample and highly complex flavors at the nose develop then to mineral notes of graphite, fruity tones of red berries and spicy aromas of clove and vanilla. Long and balanced at the palate, smooth and persistent notes bring to the elegant end characterized by present and velvety tannins
An impeccably balanced wine, and a perfect partner to a big Tuscan steak (air-dried for extra softness), the Tenute Silvio Nardi 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Vigneto Poggio Doria offers rich dark fruit intensity, good concentration and vivid aromas. It shows extra power and depth with plum, blackberry and a woody red fruit tone that recalls pomegranate or cassis. Even the appearance of this wine is a tone or two darker, albeit with that pretty Sangiovese shine and gloss that radiates from inside the glass. This Brunello delivers.
-Robert Parker 96 Points
The purity of blue fruit, flowers and subtle wet earth are very impressive on the nose. Full body, firm and very silky tannins and a long and beautiful finish. Shows strength and longevity. Better after 2021.
-James Suckling 95 Points
Collemattoni Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is made from 100 percent Sangiovese.
Intense ruby red with brilliant burgundy reflects in color. Reminiscent of wild black fruits, vanilla and spices on the nose and dry, warm, slightly austere but velvety in the palate.
This wine comes from the oldest vineyard of Collemattoni: Fontelontano. Less than half hectare. It's one of the few Single Vineyard Brunello di Montalcino riserva.
Coming from a parcel with 15-18 year old vines planted in sandy clay and marl soils.
Harvest is 100% destemmed with a soft pressing, fermentation in stainless steel tanks at controlled temperature of 28-30°C, pumping over for the first week of maceration following by skin-contact maceration for 20-25 days with rack and return technique (delestage).
Malolactic fermentation completed. The delestage and the pumping over are then spaced out along the process.
Wine is slightly filtered before bottling.
"Dried berry and cherry with flower and walnut undertones. Some stones and dry earth. Full-bodied with a chewy, intense palate, showing wonderful structure and depth. A serious 2015 Brunello. Drink after 2023."
- James Suckling (December 2020), 96 pts
Antica Vigna Valpolicella Ripasso DOC Superiore is made from 50% Corvina, 45% Rondinella and 5% Merlot.
Ripasso Superiore DOC is an elegant and refined wine, showing a beautiful and intense ruby color. Spicy, with cherry hints and wild berries notes, it features great personality and complexity. In the palate it is rich, very fruity, elegant and still young but already very well-orchestrated, with the typical notes of wild berries that blend well with the complexity of the wine.
20% in steel· 80% in wood for 6 months of which 2/3 in American and French barriques, half of which are used for the second and third time 1/3 in large barrels
Fermentation time: about 7/10 days the first and 15 days the second.
Fermentation: at a controlled temperature of 18/20° and second fermentation on the skins of Amarone at 18/20°C.
Vinification: soft crushing of destemmed grapes to obtain Valpolicella.
Drying: the grapes are not dried but vinified fresh.
Harvest: mid-September with manual harvesting of the grapes.
VINIFICATION AND AGENG:
Vineyard management: sustainable agriculture and great attention to natural cycles
Vine density: 4,000 to 5,400 vines per hectare
Vine planting year: from 1972 to 2009
Vineyard training system: guyot and pergola
Soil type: limestone
Height: 350/400 meters asl
Geographical location: Tenuta di Mezzane, Tenuta di Cazzano di Tramigna
Pairs well with grilled and roasted meats, as well as cheese.
Domaine Louis Moreau Chablis Vaillons Premier Cru is made from 100 percent Chardonnay.
Chablis achieves its highly distinctive mineral character due to its cool northerly climate and its highly calcareous soil. The Domaine Louis Moreau Chablis Vaillons Premier Cru is a generous, fleshy and lively wine that displays a beautiful balance of minerality, fruitiness and elegance.
Chablis, with its steely character and fresh citrus flavor, pairs well with white fish and shellfish and its naturally high acidity can counterbalance cream-based sauces. Unoaked Chablis lends itself well to vegetables, starches, Comté, or fresh goat cheese.