Expert wine writer Kerin O’Keefe has a deep personal knowledge of Tuscany and its extraordinary wine, and her account is both thoroughly researched and readable. Organized as a guided tour through Montalcino’s geography, this essential reference also makes sense of Brunello’s complicated history, from its rapid rise to the negative and positive effects of the 2008 grape-blending scandal dubbed “Brunellogate.”
Brunello di Montalcino helps wine lovers maneuver their way among Montalcino’s minefield of diversity by breaking the vast commune down into seven distinct subzones, ranging from the highest reaches around the town of Montalcino, which yield austere, elegant wines destined for lengthy aging in cellars; down to the lower plains in the deep south around Sant’Angelo Scalo, home to immediate, muscular Brunellos with higher alchol and lower acidity; and to all the other fascinating areas that lie between those two geographical extremes.
O’Keefe also provides in-depth profiles of 58 carefully chosen wineries, big and small, famous and unknown, who produce excellent Brunellos that best express the quintessential chracteristics of both Sangiovese and the various subzones in Montalcino.
List of Illustrations
Introduction. Brunello: A Modern-Day Phenomenon of Made in Italy
Part One. The Place, the Grape, the History, and the Wine
2. Temperamental Sangiovese: Location, Location, Location
3. Birth of a New Wine
4. Brunello Comes of Age
5. Boom Years and the Loss of Tipicità
6. The Brunellogate Scandal
7. Brunello Today and Tomorrow: The Return to Tipicità, or Business as Usual?
Part Two. Leading Producers by Subzone
9. Bosco and Torrenieri
13. Castelnuovo dell’Abate
Part Three. Beyond Brunello: Other Wines and Local Cuisine
14. Montalcino’s Other Wines: Rosso di Montalcino, Moscadello, Sant’Antimo, Chianti Colli Senesi and IGT Toscana
15. Brunello, Rosso, and Food Pairing
Appendix A. Vintage Guide to Brunello
Appendix B. Brunello at a Glance
- University of California Press