The Tuscan village of Montalcino, about 20 miles south of Sienna, lies within a region famous for producing full bodied red wines. Local vineyards are planted mostly in Sangiovese, which is the only varietal used to make the highly rated Brunello di Montalcino. Brunello translates as “little dark one,” referring to the deep rich color of the larger variety of Sangiovese grapes used in this wine. The Poggio San Polo 2010 Brunello di Montalcino (Allegrini Estates) is one of the great Brunello di Montalcino’s I recently tasted while visiting an enoteca (shop selling local wines) in the village (see Adventures In Italian Horizontal Wine Tasting).
This is a big red wine that compliments grilled steaks or is fine just for sipping. I like my reds bold enough to cut with a chainsaw, I’ll rate this one 4 out of 5 on the chainsaw-required scale. Alcohol is 14.5%, but like many Italian wines the alcohol is not as noticeable (doesn’t get you drunk as fast) as similar wines from the U.S.
I had a mixed case shipped home that included a few bottles of the Poggio San Polo 2010 (arrived in about 2 weeks, see Wine Tasting article referenced above for more information about the shop). At least one wine shop in the Napa area carries this wine, check with your local wine seller.* Published prices range from $60 to $100 per 750ml. On a recent visit to my local Costco in Fairfield (15 minutes southeast of downtown Napa) I was surprised to find the Caparzo 2009 Brunello di Montalcino ($30), which is a good representative of wines from the area at half the price.
*If you have a source for this wine where you live, please share it by leaving a Comment below identifying the shop. Thanks!