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Title. Double click me.

Updated: Sep 16

Deep ruby, tight garnet rim. Fruity nose with tones of rose petals and refined oak. A juicy palate with fine tannins, green peppercorns, and other savoury spices over a soft, mineral, chalky finish. Some 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot and 3% Petit Verdot, with quite a bit more Cabernet than the typical 55%- probably that gives more structure and life.

Medium-bodied, this bottle would have fetched a high price if not for the inconsistent RP scores on the vintage (RP87 in 2013, RP90 in 2016, RP93 in 2014).

Okay, it's okay. 2013 could have been a better vintage-we know. But that helps to maintain its low price and is still good enough for the more discerning tasters who require a modern St Estephe at Cru Level- floral, dense, round and prosperous for the class, with fresh fruit and fine tannins. ABV13%.

The other scores and tastings are terrific, such as:

WE95, commending the structure and superb fruit. The dense, dark tones with tarry tannins and juicy fruitiness. Density and fine tannins.

Also, GG95, for the articulate nose with full-on fruit expression supported by fine toasted oak, as well as the soft palate with delicate, silky tannins revolving around racy fruit, reasonably concentrated and refined.

AG94 praises the dimensional burst from the glass: graphite, camphor, incense, tobacco, smoke and game, concentrated, power(sic., a dark, brooding wine that boasts notable depth and tannin, considering its mid-weight structure).

WS92 commended the 'Rock-solid, lightly steeped red currant and damson plum fruit that fills out nicely with air, while singed alder, tobacco, iron and warm pebble notes show in the background' and adds that 'the pure finish has good energy—a great effort for the vintage(edited.)

JS92 praises the structure, silky tannin, excellent acidities and fruit balance; full-bodied, integrated and seamless for the vintage, spicy undertones.

Referencing Some of the best scores and notes written on the vintage, the taste profile of this bottle is both traditional and modern. On the conventional side, the 'delicate savoury aromas of rosemary, dried raspberry, floral forest floor(JD, edited)' and 'cherry, blackberry, liquorice, earth and spice flavours from Sangiovese(WS, edited)' echoed the more rustic styles.

On the modern front, the 'floral tones, bright raspberry, toasted almond and a playful touch of medicinal herb that shape a careful and contemplative bouquet' (RP, edited), as well as 'freshness and pure ripe fruit that fills the palate( blood orange, dried and fresh red cherry, and fresh tomato leaf' (WS, edited).

The nose does reflect the palate; the colour is bright and clear(of deep garnet with a tight rim).

Our points for you to consider are:

  • ABV at 14.5% may still be too high for some;

  • The palate is too linear and boring;

  • The fruit may be too bright;

  • Oaking ageing is from mixing small, medium and large barrels- an exciting result- a shortage of traditionalism.

The wine is balanced, though. There are 'bright aromatic nuances followed by silky tannins and softly finessed fruit flavours, pure and supple, delivering almost seamless harmony at this early stage, with refined, well-integrated tannins(RP, edited). The structure is always there: classic, angular tannin structure and a pleasant light bitterness(JD, revised). Indeed, On Barrbi soils, gravel and clay contribute to the wine with power, while its sandy soils heighten aromatics. 2016 vintage also contributes to the wine balance.

Barbi's "Blue Label" Brunello is the heart of the estate's production and flagship bottling. Owner Giovanni Cinelli Colombini, who 'founded' the Concorzio in 1958, designed this bold label with bright colours!! The family has been producing Brunello from this vineyard since 1892, sourced from the estate's 41 hectares in the southeast area of Montalcino.

Scores are high- RP94+, Jeb Dunnuck 95 Points, JS95, WS95—another ten years to go.

Modern style of extraction in great contrast to 2009- dense, suppressed, clean wood spice, sweet vanilla, toasty and robust hints of cigar box and mint-alcohol for bottled wine is 14%. There are adorable noses of creme de cassis, spring flowers, violets, roses, subtle barbecue smoke and charcoal, intense, pure fruit, dark, extraordinary purity, structure and length. Bodied, at cru level. The blend is 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, and 5% Petit Verdot; hence, some complexities and some mileage of 20+ years.

Scores are good. RP gives 96 and talks about its modern style with soul and potential. JS gives 94 and writes, 'pinpoint but rich fruit in blackcurrants, liquorice, fresh herbs, blackberry leaf and cedar. Full body, structured tannins, vibrant acidity and a long finish. It is a wonderful combination of freshness and fruit. Delicious now, but this will hold for many more years.' (edited).

This is a consolidation of the tasting and papers

written from 2006 to 2013. These write-ups had been with the orginal site Wine and Beyond, Yahoo, until the service stopped by Yahoo in September 2013.


For years I have been working with wines, either buying it, selling it to wine companies, lecturing and writing about it, and, not unimportantly, enjoying it with friends. If any of the articles on this site are worth reading it is due to my teachers, my mentors, my peers and friends, my students, and in particularly my editors who ignite in me a desire to communicate in wines.


Clinging to the trellis of wine, I started to get more and more involved with estates and winemakers, by supporting them with consultancy in communication and marketing. The more I spend my time outside Hong Kong, the more I sense a desire to be part of the international wine family.


Writing about wine represents a moment of reflection, curiosity, atitudes and a desire to analyse often hidden structures and history, in an effort to make the wealth of wine accessible to a targetted, and hopefully larger audience.


I am not sure if I can wine proivde more accessible to all through this blog. But I am sure to write in wine means being involved in wine and  to remain as impartial and objective as possible.


Kevin Tang.

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