Cerbaiona

Tuscany, Italy

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For the past two decades, the public’s idea of Brunello has increasingly been a modern wine, deeply colored, layered with oak, and delivering flavors not dissimilar to bold red wines from other regions and other countries. But long before Modernism came to Montalcino, Brunello was second only to Barolo as Italy’s most revered wine precisely because it was unlike any other wine in the world — possessing a warm autumnal color, uniquely compelling forest-floor aromas and an opulent texture of pure velvet, unadorned by flavors of new wood. The more we taste Brunello, the more we understand the wines most deserving of our reverence are those of a handful of surviving traditionalists who continue to make such wines, and to do so at the very highest level. One of the very greatest of these is Diego Molinari’s tiny Cerbaiona estate.