Brunello di Montalcino 'La Manella', Cortonesi 2013
This very fine 56 hectare estate is based at La Manella (with 8ha of Brunello vines in the Manella vineyard), just north of Montalcino itself, and was established in the 1970s by the grandfather of the current generation Tommaso Cortonesi. There is also a vineyard at Poggiarelli and the two wines were blended together until Tommaso and his father decided in the 1990s to vinify them separately to respect their two very different soil compositions. Manella is predominantly clay and limestone and lies at 280-350m above sea level, with the first Sangiovese vines planted in 1983. The wine spends three years in Slavonian oak barrels and has notes of earthy forest floor and balsamic, with ripe, dark cherry fruit and plenty of tannic structure, with great depth and purity but also lively acidity. Plenty of development potential here.