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Lisini Ugolaia, Brunello di Montalcino DOCG, Tuscany

Only the best shine.

This flagship bottle Ugolaia 2009 from Lisini, against all the odds from the tough vintage, offers sweet cherry and plum fruit enhanced by perfumy pine tones, methol, spice and leather. On the palate, it is slick juice with silky tannins and deep persistencies from vines of the minute and superlative 1.5 hectares(of Lisini, southeast-facing vineyard, just behind the Lisini office) planted, in 1978, with some low-vigour, severely selected grafts Sangiovese Grosso that gives 1.1 kilos per rootstock.

This wine gives pure fruit with clean, creamy texture. Its good acidities relieve reliance on the structure of the Slavonian barrel, resulting in a palate which is juicy, clean and complete. While this wine may not be traditional enough for some veteran Brunello tasters, the wine is tasty and fresh from the relatively young vine endowment. What it also shows is unmasked, a real character, after a long time(36 months in barrels, 18 months in bottle) in the basement.

Ranked Excellent in my Belfrage references on Italians, Lisini is amongst my favourite Brunellos(Cerbaiola, Pian Della Antinori, Poggio Salvi, Uccelliera), and this top-top Cuvee Ugolaia, is yet the best to offer from Lisini. Although this wine is from the hotter South Eastern Quadrant(Sant Angelo), it tastes as polished as those from the North.

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