Caprili Brunello: A Brunello Lover's Best Choice, At the Best Price
We will keep shouting it from rooftops: 2016 Brunello is where it's at! We mentioned this in our blog about 2020's Wine Trends, but here is a tangible, buyable, example.
Caprili is a traditionalist Brunello estate that began back when there were only about 20 producers in Montalcino, which is now home to over 200. Being one of the first is not just a badge of honor – it also means they’ve had much better (and more affordable) access to the region’s best terroir.
The situation of Caprili’s estate is prime indeed: high up a hill in the village of Tavernelle, cozily nestled between Case Basse (home of the late, legendary Gianfranco Soldera, Montalcino’s greatest winemaker) – and Angelo Gaja’s Pieve Santa Restituta. Theirs are truly great holdings, and the young Giacomo Bartolommei, who runs the estate, treats them as such.
Farming is organic, and indigenous yeasts are used for fermentation. The wine is aged in large, neutral oak barrels for a minimum of 3 years. This combination of great terroir and minimal-but-thoughtful winemaking have been the basis of Caprili’s fresh, chiseled Brunellos, which are certainly cellar-worthy, yet also so pure and pretty you can drink them young.
At less than $50, it’s hard to think of a better value than Caprili’s 2016 Brunello di Montalcino; Soldera’s costs about ten to twelve times as much. And to say the ‘16 vintage was great for Tuscany borders on understatement; it’s a year of incredible quality, producing wines with remarkable power, freshness and elegance. If you’re unfamiliar with Brunello di Montalcino, this is a perfect introduction. If you’re already a Brunello lover, well…
"The 2016 Brunello di Montalcino makes a great first impression thanks to the purity and intensity of the fruit. Those two things-purity and intensity-can sometimes be uncomfortable bedfellows, but this expression from Caprili unites them in happy marriage. The bouquet opens to bright red fruit, cola, chopped mint and blue flower. There is a lot of beautiful energy on hand. The wine is smooth and silky, giving it both near and long-term appeal. This is a 45,000-bottle release. Drink 2024-2040." -Monica Larner, Wine Advocate
"An initial burst of medicinal red fruits and exotic spice evolves into a more refined expression of dusty roses, cedar and wild strawberries, as the 2016 Caprili Brunello di Montalcino unfolds in the glass. The textures are silky in feel, contrasted by an intense wave of tart berries and salty minerals, all carried across a core of zesty acids. This shows the radiance of the 2016 vintage, along with rounded tannins which add poise without ever robbing the expression of its vibrancy, culminating in a totally classic and fully satisfying finale." -Ian D'Agata, Vinous