As you can well imagine, the 2004 Brunello di Montalcino Cerretalto was absolutely explosive on the palate, and even more so because it followed the stylistically traditional, more understated and more ethereal wines from Montalcino in this tasting--such as Cerbaiona and Salvioni. Giacomo Neri's Brunello would stand tall among the wines from Bolgheri and coastal Tuscany, given the thicker extraction, textural richness and power he strives to achieve. Despite the more robust Bordelaise style, the wine maintains a brilliant sense of balance, finesse and poise that is only evident in the greatest expressions of Brunello. When Robert Parker and I asked our audience to name their favorite wines in this flight of ten, the Cerretalto and the Masseto garnished the most votes. The wine is supple and velvety in texture with a long, polished finished. My favorite quality in great Brunello are the balsam herb aromas you get with Sangiovese that is ripened with deep diurnal shifts between day and nighttime temperatures right before harvest. This wine delivers those in spades. (ML)
Very powerful and rich, with blackberry, licorice and light toasty oak. This has pure fruit. Turns exotic and decadent. Full-bodied, with dense, powerful tannins, but velvety and beautiful. Big and powerful. Layered and gorgeous. (JS)
*CELLAR SELECTION* The aromas are harmonious and penetrating; the mouthfeel smooth and velvety and the overall effect is one of complexity and intensity. Cerretalto is a cru selection riserva and represents one of the most modern, fruit-forward and boldest expressions from the Montalcino territory.
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