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“One beautiful Sangiovese … 94 rating.”Monica Larner
“Best wine from here for ages. 96 rating.”James Suckling
Montalcino’s noble Colombini family made their first commercial vintages of Fattoria dei Barbi Brunello in the 1930s. That makes them one of the half dozen most venerable producers in Montalcino.
But their experience as winemakers goes back even further ... into the 18th century. And all that experience come together in the monumental 2010 Brunello vintage, with one of their finest wines in a generation.
Barbi is one of the longest continuously running winemaking estates in Montalcino, having been founded in 1790. And the oldest Brunello in their cellars, the 1892, makes them contemporary to Biondi-Santi in establishing Brunello as one of the great wines of Europe.
In other words, the Colombinis know like few others how to make great Brunello. And the family’s collected knowledge now resides with Stefano Cinelli Colombini, the 20th generation to be in charge of the estate. And like his predecessors, he has never wavered in his dedication to the classic methods that made Brunello one of the world’s uniquely great wines.
Stefano’s knowledge and experience have given him the opportunity to make something special in the exceptional 2010 vintage, the most talked-about year for Brunello since 1990. The harvest produced unusually concentrated grapes, with the potential to produce wines that perfectly balance power, complexity and finesse.
But realizing that potential wasn’t a given. It required both skill and an understanding of what sets Brunello apart from other wines, qualities that Colombini has in spades. The result is a 2010 that truly captures Brunello’s magic in a historic year.
Fundamental to Barbi’s marriage of power and finesse is the estate’s location: the historic heart of the appellation southeast of the town where Brunello was born. Here the rocky, high-altitude vineyards produce the most classic wines: intensely aromatic with superb richness on the palate and the firm structure to age with ease.
Colombini expresses this essence-of-Brunello character through a classic process that culminates in two years of aging in large Slovenian oak botti. This yielded a 2010 Brunello that is powerfully structured, and will be slow to unfurl, but with everything in place for future greatness. All it needs is time.
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