Tradition Triumphs in an Old-School Brunello Vintage

Old timers are talking about 2013 as the Brunello vintage that turns back the clock. They compare it to such legendary years as 1988, 1975 and 1964 for the deep and rich, yet gracefully proportioned and perfumed, Brunellos it produced.
 
And as you’d expect in such a year, it’s classically schooled growers like Fuligni who made the most of it.

Living History

Fuligni made its first commercial vintages in the early 1980s, yet its history as Montalcino winemakers is much older, dating back to the estate’s founding in 1923.
 
This makes it a charter member of Montalcino’s family growers. And like its old-school peers, Fuligni has never wavered in its dedication to crafting Brunello as it was meant to be.
 
Fundamental to the 2013 Fuligni’s elegant character is the estate’s location: the historic heart of the appellation east of the town, where Brunello was born. The old vines are planted on high-altitude slopes of very rocky Santa Fiora clay and limestone marl in the I Cottimelli district, described by D’Agata as “a real grand cru section” of Montalcino.
 
This soil, and the vineyard’s east-through-southeast exposures, are key to Fuligni’s classically elegant style: intensely aromatic with superb richness on the palate and the firm structure to age with ease.

A Pure Expression of Terroir

Proprietor Maria Flora Fuligni and winemaker Paolo Vagaggini—one of Montalcino’s most revered enologists—use updated traditional methods to ensure the purest expression of fruit, terroir and vintage. The stainless steel fermentation and maceration is classically long, followed by three years aging in largely 3000-liter well-seasoned Slavonian oak botti and 500- and 750-liter Allier tonneaux.
 
2013’s throwback long, cool growing season was ideally suited to both the estate’s terroir and this approach, providing Fuligni and Vagaggini with wonderfully nuanced and concentrated fruit. And, drawing on their decades of experience, they hit it out of the park.
 
Here it is—a classic Brunello from one of Montalcino’s historic aziende, from a terroir and vintage tailor-made for its inspired style. 

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