Brunello 2011: A tasting note from one of the Italian wine world’s favorite tasters and wine bloggers

Federico Bindi’s Taccuin di Vino is one of those lovely gems of a wine blog that may not be well known outside of Italy but is devoured joyously by Italian wine insiders and lovers on a regular basis. Its popularity among the Italian wine intelligentsia is owed, no doubt, to his extreme ability as a taster, which he pairs brilliantly with his natural ability as a writer. He recently posted his tasting notes for the Barbi 2011 (classic) Brunello di Montalcino on the site. The following is an excerpted translation by our blogmaster. What a wonderful tasting note! Enjoy…


Fattoria dei Barbi’s 2011 Brunello di Montalcino (blue label), writers Federico, “is a studied and classic representation of Sangiovese from Montalcino made from grapes grown in different vineyards and aged in large casks. And at such a reasonable price, it’s a wine that never disappoints.”

“An ‘old-style wine,'” he continues, “orange red in color with notes of brick and hints of ruby red, transparent with dense and swift tears, this bottle delivers a sense of domestic comfort just by its appearance. On the nose, it is intense and floral with notes of violets, iris, and roses; and then red fruit with cherry, strawberry, and a lovely hint of brandy-cured black cherry. These are followed by ash and white and black pepper spice, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves (it’s almost as if the whole repertory of salumeria spices were represented here, even dry garlic).”

In finale, the nose delivers “a touch of herbaceous character with deeper and even tertiary notes of the aromas above. These evolve into peat, bay, Mediterranean shrubs, chestnut flowers, and the woodsy aroma of holm oak.”

And then on to the “mouth” of the wine: “A spherical wine, inviting, ample, and well rested, a wine that comforts you as it welcomes you to its internal tension. Very dry, with great flavor intensity and body and an impressive note of acidity and abundant fine-grain tannin.”

“The finish lingers measuredly but with remarkable harmony. The alcohol doesn’t joke around and that’s normal for this category. But you quickly forget it thanks to its salty, contagious, surprisingly immediate and easy-going approachability.”

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