Brunello di Montalcino Gaja, Pieve Santa Restituta 2012
Gaja's 2012 Brunello opens with a bouquet of wildflowers and red berries, followed by fresh balsamic notes, notably sweet liquorice and thyme. The palate is very clean, with flavours of fresh plum and red cherry, well integrated wood aromas and silky tannins
Angelo Gaja is one of Italy’s superstar winemakers, who made his reputation with the stunning Barbarescos from of his family’s estate in Piedmont since the 1970s. He set about breaking all the rules of Barbaresco - not only planting Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc alongside the native Nebbiolo, but also blending Barbera with Nebbiolo grapes from both Barbaresco and Barolo vineyards, so that many of his best wines could not take those famous appellations-
Gaja set out to make Pieve Santa Restituta one of the greatest producers of classic Brunello di Montalcino in Tuscany. Pieve Santa Restituta is named after a tiny fourth-century church on a hill towards the south of the Montalcino appellation, which had fallen into disrepair until Gaja stepped in. Over the following decade, he set about restoring the church and returning the estate, first established in this magnificent, wild countryside, to its former glory. The 4,000sqm state-of-the-art winery and cellars are hidden below ground, while what are most visible are 16 hectares of immaculately manicured vineyards.
Angelo Gaja’s exacting standards, which are upheld by his daughter Gaia - who, these days, is the one tirelessly shuttling between Piedmont, Tuscany and the rest of the world - mean that yields have been drastically reduced and selection has been ruled with a strictness resulting in a true quality Brunello di Montalcino.
A very elegant wine with dark cherry aromas intermingled with dried summer fruits and wild herbs. The vibrant palate has intense bright cherry fruit flavours balanced with a mineral freshness. Complex and refined this wine will be delicious to drink over the next few years but will age well for at least a decade. Drink from 2018