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Brunello di Montalcino

Italy's most ancient wine region, Tuscany actually doesn't produce anywhere near as much wine as you might imagine, most other regions in Italy churn out far greater volumes. But perhaps the reason for this is that it is home of two of the country's most famous fine wines – Chianti and Brunello di Montalcino – and these wines are all about quality. Especially these days; gone are the days of the cheap red wine in a straw basket. If Chianti was once thought of as the perfect accompaniment to a $1 slice of pizza, these days it's more likely to be matched with artisanal, organic, wood-fired, gluten-free pizza drizzled with truffle oil! And Brunello, well that's always been Tuscany's most masculine expression of the Sangiovese grape. In fact, Brunello is the local name for the Sangiovese Grosso clone from which Brunello di Montalcino must, by law, be made in its entirety. Moreover, the wine cannot be released for sale until five years after harvest, which is why there's no such thing as 'cheap and cheerful' Brunello di Montalcino. Both Chianti and Brunello at their best can be absolutely fantastic, and are happily unlike any other wine style.

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