Early reports are 04 Brunello is spotty after being hailed as the vintage of the century . . . yet again. Galloni hinted at that in his forum on an 04 Brunello post. Plus, I just don’t know enough about this producer, nor have I had enough Garagiste experience to know if John’s flowing descriptions come true or not.
I attended an 04 Tuscany/05 Piedmont trade tasting last week and while the Poggio Antico was fantastic and the Lisini and Fuligni were good, but not mind blowing, I felt others were lacking. I believe this is in part due to the fact that the wines were only open an hour prior (doesn’t John mention something to this fact in the e-mail about the SF event?) and thus were gripping, and not giving anything, as expected, at least for my palate.
I think there will be plenty of 2004 Brunello at screaming prices in mid to late Spring as this vintage doesn’t live up to they hype and the anticipated economic conditions continue.
Doesn’t 2004 fall under the time when Brunello wineries were caught using fruit from other areas? Did they nail down whether that was a “few bad apples” or a common practice across the region? I’d have to defer to others for info on the vintage but I’ve roundly heard 2004 was good in Italy. Don’t remember vintage of the century talk though.
My vintage of the century monkier was probably overblown. From what I have tasted and read, 2004 Piedmont is living up to the hype. As for Brunello, most of the “scandal” was centered around the 2003 vintage, although there seem to still be some who wonder if all of the improprieties were revealed and thus wonder if the 2004s are, in fact, “pure” Sangiovese.
A great resource from an insiders view (albeit he is ITB, winemaker at Il Poggione) is from the Montalcino Report, of which I won’t link, as I do not know the rules of such behavior on this site. Anyway, he has a post on there from mid December speaking to additional monitoring procedures to avoid another “scandal”. It ties in with the whole grey market issue and his belief against it, etc., etc.
I am less concerned about another vintage marred by blending issues than by a) inconsistent quality and b) ever increasing prices based on superior vintage speculation.
I too, would defer to others for more info, however, as I am no expert.
piedmonte was much stronger than tuscany in 2004. in 2005, they were both uniformly good. and tuscany will be the shining star in 2006. i don’t really have the budget for a lot of italian wine, as pricey as they are, so i have implemented the plan of buying only 2004 barolo/barbaresco and 2006 brunello going forward. with any luck, however, garagiste will offer some older italians at good prices for current consumption.