Montalcino, 2016 vintage

Comments apply to all wines coming from the town of Montalcino, not just Brunello. However the star ratings are those given by the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino specifically for Brunello di Montalcino DOCG.

2016 Growing season: 2016 was another hot year, with vineyards on clay soils on the eastern side of Montalcino faring best by getting more rain than other areas and being able, due to the clay, to retain it. In other areas the rain was more problematic, but the the drytramontana winds arrived in time for veraison, reducing the risk of rot, and aiding ripening. Giacomo Neri describes 2016 vintage as a ‘leopard’, a vintage characterised by uneven ripening, producing wines which he called ‘nervoso’, meaning nervous or taut due to high acidities (Interview at his Casanova di Neri winery on Friday 03rd November 2017).

2016 Wine style: Paolo Ciacci of Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona told me at the winery in 2018 he was very happy with 2016, saying the vintage gave clean fruit with good flavours, and a lighter, velvety mouthfeel but with nice intensity. Bernardino Sani of Argiano (Visit 2020) told me he felt this was a great vintage. 

2016 Production: The vineyard area comprised 1,979 hectares for Brunello and 501 hectares for Rosso producing 84,376hl of Brunello and 28,646hl of Rosso respectively.