2009 Brunello di Montalcino DOCG

by Laura Gray on November 18, 2013

unnamed (4)This Brunello is a true child of the hot summer of 2009 and shows pleasing warmth and opulence in the mouth. We gave considerably less wood aging than we normally do: only 34 months compared to our typical 40 plus months (bear in mind the DOCG specified minimum is just 24 months). Too much time in wood for a ripe vintage like this would risk tiring the wine and lead to premature aging which we were keen to avoid. On the nose: layered fresh fruit, wet earth, tobacco and cardomom. Harmonious and rotond, with supple yet firm tannins and a full sweetness on the grand finale. Not a nervy expression of Sangiovese but an extremely poised, pleasant and balanced wine. Perfect drinking while we all wait for the 2007s and the 2010s to come into their own.

Grape varietal: 100 % Sangiovese Grosso known in Montalcino as “Brunello”
Aging in wood: 34 months in large barrels
Bottle aging: The D.O.C.G. regulations governing the production of Brunello require a minimum of 4 months bottle aging before release.
Total production: 9.304 0.75 Liter bottles, 12 1.5 Magnums
Bottled: 25 July 2013 in ecological, lightweight bottles
Alcohol per volume%: 14.26
Total acidity%: 5.6 g/l
pH: 3.40
Dry extract: 31.30
The 2009 vintage was awarded four stars by the Consorzio di Brunello which signifies “annata ottima” or excellent vintage. Brunellos from this vintage are elegant and medium-bodied with a gentle tannic structure and a medium cellar life. In 2009 water reserves were high after a rainy spring that lasted much longer than normal; right up until the first weeks of July. This proved useful for the hot and dry summer that followed. Alcohol content is on the high side, but supported by excellent levels of total acidity and extracts. Polyphenols are both substantial and well balanced. In spite of the initial rains, 2009 is considered to be a warm vintage because of the protracted drought and heat from mid-July through to early October. As always the timing of the harvest was crucial to quality; we walked the fine line between waiting for the grapes to become fully mature and lose their vegetal aromas and yet picking before they were over-ripe in order to avoid notes of jam and chocolate. Here is a firsthand look at our 2009 harvest:

Soil composition: The estate has three separate vineyards in different areas of Montalcino, each bringing varying aspects of Montalcino to our wine. Le Due Porte: high altitude, northwest exposition, galestro and alberese. La Vigna del Capa: lower, south facing, marine fossils, older vines. La Vigna Vecchia: lower, south facing, high minerality, older vines.
Density of vines per hectare: 4.000
Growth system : Balanced bilateral “cordone”
I Trulli Cucina Meridionale is celebrating their 20 year anniversary in New York City and continues to be a staple for authentic Italian cuisine with a focus on dishes inspired from traditional Puglian recipes. It is a family owned restaurant with the matriarch of the Marzovilla family, Dora leading the way as the mastermind behind most of the dishes as well as the resident in-house pasta maker. Additionally I Trulli offers a prolific all-Italian wine list carefully put together by Dora’s son Nicola Marzovilla, who also oversees the front and back of the house operations. Dora has shared her wonderful Braised Rabbit recipe to pair perfectly with our 2009 Brunello. Braised Rabbit with Potatoes

  • 1 whole rabbit cut into 10 pieces; 2 front quarters, 4 loin pieces with belly flaps attached, 2 thighs and 2 rear shanks. (Ask your butcher if you’re bad with a knife.)
  • 2 large white onions, sliced
  • 3 large potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • ½ cup chopped parsley
  • ½ cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • Salt and pepper

Lay the loin pieces flat on your work surface with the flaps spread. Evenly sprinkle the sides facing up with salt, pepper, parsley and cheese. Wrap the flaps around the loin enclosing the seasonings and secure with twine or a toothpick. Season all of the pieces with salt and pepper. Coat the surface of a large sauté pan with oil and heat over a medium flame. Brown the pieces on all sides and remove from the pan. Add the onions to the pan and sauté until translucent. Add the wine and cook until the wine is reduced by half. Arrange the rabbit and potato pieces in a baking dish and cover with the onions and wine. Evenly sprinkle the remaining parsley and cheese over the rabbit and season with salt and pepper. Cover the dish with foil and cook in a 400˚ F oven for about 90 minutes or until the potatoes are tender. Remove the foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes for color. Serves four. Grazie Dora!

Dora @ I Trulli

Mature-looking mid ruby with orange rim. Nose of cherry, tea-leaves and savoury notes. Rather sweet fruit on the palate with almost fully integrated acidity, but ripe tannins add grip and interest. Very long. Ready now. Drink 2014– 2017. Walter Speller


A rich fruity red with chewy tannins and dried fruits on the nose and palate. Some smoky undertones, too. Full body. Structured. Needs two to three years of bottle age. JS


TASTED 100% BLIND - tastedjournal.com - 89/91
AL – Developed ruby red, the nose has some evolution/complexity with notes of dried cherry, leather, spices and wood. Rather full palate with dried fruit, high tannin/acidity, leathery notes and fairly long finish. 89 MDM – Garnet red colour with almost brick red hue. Mature nose with hints of ripe berries, prunes and dried figs, mild spices in the background. On the palate balmy with medium weight and very good length. 91


THE WINE ADVOCATE #211 (Feb 2014) Monica Larner. Rating: 90 pts. Drink 2016-2023
The 2009 Brunello di Montalcino is a big wine loaded with personality and intensity. Sweet cherry, baking spice and licorice burst from the glass in this explosive expression. There’s even a tangy touch of peppercorn or black olive at the back. Rich layers and polished tannins fill in the wine’s broad shoulders and give the wine an extra push of power and persistency. The wine was aged in botte grande for 34 months. This Brunello is ready to drink relatively early. Drink: 2016-2023. Il Palazzone is owned by Richard Parsons, former chairman and CEO of Time Warner. He purchased this beautiful property at the center of the appellation in 2000 and has engaged the very talented Paolo Vagaggini as consulting winemaker. US Importer: Domenico Valentino


THE WINE ENTHUSIAST (May 2014) Kerin O'Keefe. Rating: 89 pts.
This estate continues to improve every year and has made an outstanding effort with the 2009 vintage. It opens with aromas of underbrush, violet, red berries, menthol, thyme and a hint of orange peel. The palate offers wild cherry layered with notes of chocolate and espresso alongside dusty, drying tannins. It ends on a licorice note. K.O.


DECANTER (May 2014) HIGHLY RECOMMENDED (17.25 / 90+)
Very savoury, aromatic Brunello loaded with hints of sassafras, sandalwood, Oriental spices and bay leaf, along with ripe, smoky red fruit. Big, rich, ripe and fuoll, with fair concentration of fruit flavours. Good length. Drink 2016-2024


Owned by Dick Parsons, the characterful ex-CEO of Time Warner, this five hectare vineyard sources its fruit from three different altitudes and soil types. It’s a complex, serious wine that takes time to unfurl in the glass, with pretty firm tannins, even in 2009, soft, ripe, summer pudding fruit flavours and a slight alcoholic heat on the finish. 2015-20


ANTONIO GALLONI, Vinous Media Tasting Notes (May 2014) 89 pts.
Il Palazzone’s 2009 Brunello di Montalcino is quite pretty in this vintage. Round, succulent and juicy, the 2009 captures the essence of the house style in its generous inviting personality. Sweet tobacco, wildflowers, spices and leather all blossom on the succulent, layered finish. There is a lot to like here but like pretty much all 2009s, this Brunello is best enjoyed sooner rather than later. 2014-2017


STEPHEN TANZER'S INTERNATIONAL WINE CELLAR, Issue 175 (August 2014) 88(+?)pts.
Good bright red. Slightly medicinal aromas of red cherry, crushed blueberry, licorice and mint. Extremely fresh but not hard, showing a pliant texture to the nicely delineated flavors of minty red fruits, licorice and flowers. Finishes with good length and a touch of heat.

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