This intense version is concentrated, with black cherry, blackberry, graphite, tobacco and spice flavors, yet remains light-footed due to the racy profile. Structured, yet beautifully balanced and youthful. Shows purity and length on the aftertaste, which introduces a floral component. (BS)
There’s a lot in this wine, in terms of complexity, that is all underpinned by concentrated, ripe and assertive red cherries. The oak is nicely placed and there’s a sense of purpose and build on the palate that really sets it apart. High-class tannins.
There are a handful of wines in Italy that make me nervous before I taste them because my expectations are so high. This is one of those wines. Indeed, previous editions of Cerretalto have earned the coveted 100 point score, and I am astutely aware of the pedigree and potential that comes forth with each new vintage. As enthusiastic as my assessment of the 2013 Brunello di Montalcino Cerretalto is, I'm stopping short of that perfect score. This vintage is something of a moving target with wines that are beautiful, without a doubt, yet the growing conditions were not even across the appellation, and achieving optimal tannic management posed a challenge to many producers. If I were to make any criticism of this wine, it would fall along those lines. That aside, this is a beautiful Brunello that boasts deep intensity and bold black fruit flavors that are plummy and rich. Spice, toasted oak and tobacco frame that primary fruit. Cerretalto ages in oak for 30 months and that strong imprint has added to the structure, depth and contemporary character of this A-list Brunello. That oak imprint is also reinforced in the wine's tannins. There's no doubt that this wine needs more cellar aging. I would absolutely not suggest drinking it within the next five years. Any awkwardness it shows now should iron itself out with more bottle time. Only 9,771 bottles were made. (ML)
Cerretalto is a 4ha vineyard on red sandy clay at the very eastern edge of Montalcino. It's a cool site that's very slow and late ripening, with significant temperature differences between day and night. In 2013 the grapes were harvested during the second week of October, and though not designated as a Riserva, it's aged like one. It's a wine that takes time to come around, and the 2013 is characteristically closed, rigid and austere in its youth. It hints at dusty black cherry and wild plums wrapped up in a graphite and iron fist. Bracing acidity cuts through the intense, concentrated core. The oak is polished but needs to integrate, while stiff, sticky tannins demand a few years to soften. This is all about patience. (MM)
Deep luminous ruby-red. Spicy red cherry and mineral nuances on the nose and in the mouth. Enters fresh and juicy with noteworthy flesh and size to the red and blue fruit flavors, then suave and refined all the way onto the long refined finish. Closes with youthfully chewy tannins and a tactile mouthfeel offering hints of flinty minerals and raspberry. A brooding giant that is extremely elegant and refined. Very well done. (ID)
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