Our coverage of the 2010 Brunello di Montalcino vintage, possibly the greatest ever, is drawing to a close. The only downside of this vintage is that the price vs. score ratios have been spoiling us. Today this rings very true, as we are able to offer Castiglon del Bosco 2010, a 96 point wine, for £130 a case of six. This gives it a Price Over Points Ratio (POP) of 14.4, a quite ludicrous score. We consider any POP Score below 30 as exceptional and a POP score of 20 is very rare; most 96 point First Growths are an order of magnitude higher, at 300-400 a a bottle.

Castiglon del Bosco is one of the most prominent producers in Montalcino, unchanged for 400 years and one of the founding members of the Consorzio del Brunello, which was established in 1967. In fact in 1888 Ferruccio Biondi Santi was residing at the Castiglon del Bosco estate when he isolated the sangiovese clone and invented the denomination Brunello di Montalcino. One can understand why he resided there, the 1,800 hectares estate is famous, along with the splendid wine, for its magnificent beauty. It comes as no surprise therefore that in 2003 Massimo Ferragamo, son of Salvatore and Chairman of their north American headquarters, fell in love with the wine and estate, prompting him to buy it.

Since purchasing the estate Ferragamo has invested heavily in the vineyards and winery, culminating in the spectacular 2010 vintage. In addition to this he has turned the estate into one of Italy’s most expensive resorts, including a golf course designed by British Open champion Tom Weiskopf. Salvatore Ferragamo made his money creating one of the most expensive fashion brands in the world, conversely the wine offers some of the very best value in Brunello. This is illustrated in the table below, which reflects wines scoring 96 points from James Suckling and 94 points or greater from Monica Larner of the Wine Advocate:

Castiglion Del Bosco Brunello di Montalcino£130
Talenti Brunello di Montalcino£140
Casanova di Neri Brunello di Montalcino£150
Voliero Brunello di Montalcino£170
Siro Pacenti Brunello di Montalcino Pelagrilli£175
Antinori Brunello di Montalcino Pian delle Vigne£180
Caparzo Brunello di Montalcino Vigna della Casa£185
Terralsole Brunello di Montalcino£210
Poggio Antico Brunello di Montalcino Altero£230
Canalicchio di Sopra Brunello di Montalcino£240

The Castiglon del Bosco grapes are selected from the Estate’s south facing Capanna vineyards, located 350 meters above sea level. The terroir is characterised by clay shale, gravel-pebble and of course ‘galestro’, the famed terroir found in the best Tuscan vineyards, which provide the wine’s unique aroma, complexity and structure. The wine is vinified 100% in their cellar, which is completely gravity fed. All grapes are sorted by hand, before fermentation begins with natural yeasts.
After malolactic fermentation the wines are transferred into French oak barriques, 20% new and 80% first and second passage for 36 months. As one can see, no expense is spared and the result is an outstanding wine for £28.46 per bottle including duty and VAT.

The Great 2010 Brunello di Montalcino Vintage
2010 is being heralded as the greatest Brunello vintage ever; James Suckling comments, ‘the market is apparently on fire. Wine lovers are rejoicing in the incredible high quality of the vintage, and rightly so. The 2010 vintage is a new benchmark for Tuscany’s iconic wine, producing reds with wonderful intensity, structure, and energy.” Vintages like this come along once or twice a lifetime and collectors should focus on these superbly priced, critically acclaimed wines. As Suckling concludes, ‘The 2010 vintage made great wines. There is no doubt about it. This is why you have to buy some.’ To read our Brunello di Montalcino 2010 vintage report please click here.

Castiglion del Bosco Brunello di Montalcino 2010 – 6×75 – £130 IB or £170.76 incl duty and VAT

James Suckling, 96 Points 
Fabulous aromas of oranges, peaches and mahogany follow through to a full body with rich, chewy tannins and a long, flavorful finish. This is dense, tight, powerful, compressed and incredibly structured. Needs four to five years of bottle age to come out of its dormancy.

Wine Advocate Monica Larner, 94 Points, tasted Feb 2015 
The 2010 Brunello di Montalcino is a ripe and fruit-forward expression that bursts with energy and red fruit intensity even at this young stage in the wine’s life. Thick layers of cherry, blackberry, cassis, vanilla and cinnamon give the wine a bold, opulent personality. The tannins are super tame and docile, even for this more structured vintage. The wine boasts a medium build with bright garnet and ruby highlights. I think Castiglion del Bosco does a great job of executing and delivering this softer style of Brunello that works so well as a companion to the hearty, wintery foods we love most. You can drink it in the near or long term. It has that level of aging flexibility. The 2010 vintage is a great one to taste and buy. (Drink 2016 – 2028)

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