Brunello di Montalcino 2018 – ready or not

Storm clouds over Montalcino illuminated by the evening light

Walter guides us through this challenging vintage. See also Brunello 2018 – enjoy this style while you can.

While tasting my way through over 150 Brunello samples from the 2018 vintage, I had a sense of déjà vu – of 2013. Both 2018 and 2013 are characterised by a cool and rainy growing season and, crucially, rain during harvest. This posed the enormous challenge of maintaining fruit purity while delaying picking as much as possible to allow the tannins to ripen. If you harvest too late, the grapes will be overripe and lose their edge, too early and you...