We were able to snag 360 bottles of one of the top-rated 2006 Brunello di Montalcinos, one that is drinking absolutely perfectly right now.
No one puts on a wine party quite like the Italians. Our three days at VinItaly last April were filled with animated tastings and conversations, culminating each night with a steady diet of minestra, gnocchi, ravioli, and roasted bird. That’s not to say, however, that we weren’t earning our keep on the back streets of Verona.
While most of the importers and collectors who attend VinItaly are focused on the latest releases, we always devote 20-30 percent of our time prying open the cellar doors of some of Italy’s most revered estates, looking to procure perfectly aged back vintages that are otherwise ticketed exclusively for the top restaurants in N.Y.C., the Bay Area, Milan, and Tokyo.
Like a truffle dog searching for hidden earthen treasures, we’ve sniffed around and have pointed our tail straight up on the majestic 2006 Brunello di Montalcino from Casanuova delle Cerbaie. We remember tasting a barrel sample of the wine during VinItaly in 2008 and it was magical — like a young thoroughbred just learning to trot. We kept a close eye on the wine when it was first released, but we missed the boat. When the offer came across our desk, we were a bit distracted. It was October 2008, and the Philadelphia Phillies had just won the World Series. Our office had spontaneously combusted into a weeklong celebration and a few things slipped through the cracks. We’re making up for it still today — but it was worth it.
But then at VinItaly in April, we got a chance to reacquaint ourselves with our old friend. This wine was so beautiful our knees buckled. It was everything we’d hoped it become — and then some.
The Brunellos of 2006 are legendary. Antonio Galloni, the most respected Italian wine critic in the world and Robert Parker’s hand-picked protégé, called it “a benchmark vintage,” whose top wines are “big, powerful with beautifully delineated aromatics, great concentration of fruit and plenty of structure.” Casanuova delle Cerbaie is one of the top wines from 2006. We put it up there in the rarified air of the greatest classically made Brunellos — Soldera, Cerbaiona, and Poggio di Sotto — the only difference is the Cerbaie is 80% the price of those legends.
Casanuova delle Cerbaie estate is located south of Montalcino, near Montosoli. At almost 1,000 feet above sea level, Cerbaie enjoys a gentle, moderate climate. All the vines are planted with southwest exposure on conglomerate soil of calcareous clay and marl, imparting an elegant mineral component. The farming is organic, the harvest done by hand. They use a sorting table (surprisingly uncommon in Montalcino) to choose only the best Sangiovese Grosso grapes to vinify. Elevage in legendary Stockinger barrels from Austria. As old school as it gets.
We’ve tracked the evolution of Casanuova delle Cerbaie for eight long years, and we are so excited to finally offer it to our members. We were able to snag 360 bottles of one of the top-rated 2006 Brunello di Montalcinos, one that is drinking absolutely perfectly right now.
93+ points from Galloni. $75 on release. $49 ONLY on WineAccess. A total of 360 bottles are up for grabs, all drawn DIRECTLY from Cerbaie’s frigid cellars in Montalcino. Absolutely, positively, NOT to be missed by Tuscan wine enthusiasts.
Great food wine. Drank over three days -- first day with an assortment of cheeses, second with grilled NY strip steak , both days, super yum. By third day, with steak again, was starting to fade only a little bit. Really excited to keep drinking this, but wish I bought more bottles.
far too tannic and acidic.
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