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Benvenuto Brunello is an international event that takes place each year in February. On February 22nd, this year's celebration will start and continue until the 25th. The event is organized by the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino. As many already know, Brunello can only be made in Montalcino from Sangiovese grapes. The event is open to industry professionals and buyers and will introduce the bottles that were harvested in the most recent years.
Stars and prizes will be given to the best bottles. The Leccio d'Oro, another prize, will be given to restaurants and wineries with the best selection of Brunello.
FDL met up with the President of the Consorzio, Fabrizio Bindocci.
How did the harvest go this year?
Very well thanks. Not too many showers in winter and spring, if we don’t count a little bit of snow in February. It really started raining in the middle of August which was a good thing for the vineyards. In September it rained again and the temperatures dropped. 2012 wines will be very good quality wines with ideal characteristics for the Brunello di Montalcino. Compared to 2011 the quantity decreased by 4 percent.
250 wine makers, 65% of exports. To which countries?
Our first market is the US, taking in 25% of our production. Northern and Central Europe, Germany and Switzerland, are also very important. Asia is becoming a big consumer, most likely to continue growing at a fast pace. Brazil is an increasing market for Brunello di Montalcino.
Lately there is talk about some trends, what’s your opinion.
Is there more request for bubbly wines and low alcohol content? If it were true, how would it influence the production of Brunello and Rosso di Montalcino wines?
It's difficult to say. For example, the Consorzio in charge of preserving the Conegliano Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore, a light white bubbly wine, is having a great moment, but this doesn’t influence our wines. We are all very careful with the alcohol content, but it’s hard for us to monitor it because of the changes in the climate and the production by hectar (from 8,000 Kg/Ha to 6,000 Kg/Ha).
Consumers are more and more aware of natural wines. What’s the Brunello producers take on it?
There are producers that specifically follow the bio guidelines in Montalcino, but all producers are aware of the environment and use products and fertilizers that have less of a negative impact.
Is there a typical Brunello consumer?
Both men and women enjoy Brunello. It’s hard to define a profile, but since a lot of our consumers are from New York, I would say a New Yorker...
Can you suggest to our readers an unexpected food and Brunello pairing?
I would advise you taste it after a meal while relaxing.
Wine Glasses Photo Via Bigstock