Brunello wine also known as Brunello di Montalcino is an Italian red wine made from grapes grown in the vineyards around the town of Montalcino. This is in the southwest of Florence in the Tuscany region.
It is today recognized as one of Italy’s most popular and unfortunately expensive wines.
The recorded history of this wine was early as the 14th century and by the end of World War 11 it had developed a reputation as one of Italy’s rarest wines.
By the 1960s there were eleven producers making the wine and in 1968 the region was granted “Denominazione di Origine” DOC status and by 1980 there were 53 producers. Again by the 21st century because of demand there were 200 producers shipping 330,000 cases per year.
The current aging requirements were established in 1998 and dictate that Brunellos are to be aged in oak for 2 years and at least 4 months in a bottle before release.
Winemakers who intentionally stray from these rules and regulations can possibly receive a conviction of commercial fraud accompanied by an imprisonment sentence of up to six years.
Brunello is often compared with the Pinot noir wines of Burgundy with its smooth tannins and ripe, fruit driven character. The high acidity of the wine allows it to pair well with food, especially grilled meat and game.
A large portion of Brunello sold in the United States is purchased in restaurants.
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