Tuscany, Italy

Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Riserva – 2012

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  • Introduction

    • “The Riserva 2012 is a quintessential Biondi Santi Riserva, reflecting not just the house style that made the firm famous, but it clearly shows Franco’s own hallmark of extreme elegance. It is a classic in the making, boasting enticing scents of rose, underbrush, wild red berry, new leather and underlying notes of crushed mint. It has a chiseled palate, featuring Morello cherry, pomegranate, orange zest, star anise and a hint of tobacco framed in taut, polished tannins. Firm acidity lends youthful tension and keeps it impeccably balanced.”

      — Kerin O’Keefe, November 2019
      Author of the book: Franco Biondi Santi, the Gentleman of Brunello

  • Vineyard Profile

    • Grape Source: 100% estate vineyards
    • Vine Age: 25 years or older
  • Vintage Report

    • The Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 2012 was the last vintage produced during the remarkable career of Franco Biondi Santi, and only the 39th Riserva ever produced by Biondi-Santi since 1888, when Brunello di Montalcino was first invented by this visionary family. The Riserva 2012, unique and rare, is dedicated to the legendary winemaker with a special mention on the main label, to honor the life achievements of this great man.

      The quite warm spring was followed by a dry and sunny summer begin. The month of August had temperatures in line with previous years but with some light showers in the second part. A cool September with some rain in the week right before the harvest, which began on September 10th.

  • Vinification

    • The grapes were healthy, ripe and rich in color with thick skins. The must was rich in sugar, extracts and acidity.

    • Fermentation: Slavonian oak barrels using indigenous yeast
    • Aging: The 2012 Riserva was aged in Slavonian oak barrels for 3 years. It benefited from a long refinement in the bottle in the quiet and darkness of the historic bottle library at Tenuta Greppo.
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Sangiovese Grosso (BBS11 Clone)
    • Optimum Drinking: Serve at 60/64°F. Uncork and decant wine from this bottle 4-6 hours before serving.
  • Tasting Notes

    • The Riserva 2012 ports Franco’s signature freshness proudly, granting a wonderful vibrancy to its monumental, yet refined structure. The bouquet opens like a symphony of soft, fruity notes which grow and expand in a crescendo, adding layers of aromatic herbs, liquorice and balsamic sensations. The taste is elegant and savory with crunchy tannins and the finish is long, clean and fragrant.



  • Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Riserva – 2012 – James Suckling – 96 Points

    A glorious nose to the wine with blackberries, plums, balsamic, mushrooms and bark. Floral. Some tile and terracotta undertones. Full-bodied with fine tannins and vivid, linear acidity running through the middle palate. Light toffee and smoke. Extremely long and lively. Traditional, yet very clean and beautiful. Drinkable now, but better after 2025.

  • Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Riserva – 2012 – Wine Spectator – 94 Points

    Solidly built, featuring a dense matrix of tannins that underlines the cherry, plum, earth, leather and tobacco notes. Vibrant, with lively acidity streamlining the fruit, tobacco and wild herb accents on the finish. Best from 2023 through 2040.

  • Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Riserva – 2012 – The Wine Advocate – 97 Points

    You will notice the dedication printed below the label of the wine label. It reads: "Dedicato a Franco Biondi Santi." Indeed, the Biondi-Santi 2012 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva is the last vintage made by the towering father figure of Brunello whom most everyone referred to as the "gentleman of Montalcino." Il Dottore, as he was also respectfully addressed, died at age 91 in April 2013, and he was very active in the winery as this magnificent wine took shape. This Riserva is a true work of beauty...

  • Biondi-Santi Brunello di Montalcino DOCG Riserva – 2012 – Decanter – 98 Points

    The 2012 Riserva is the last vintage produced by Franco Biondi Santi, and so this release is dedicated to him. Of the 39 Riservas the estate has produced since the first one in 1888, Franco oversaw 24 of them. 2012 is considered a warm vintage, more dry than hot and with an advanced harvest on 10 September: quite early for a Sangiovese from higher vineyards in Montalcino. The age of the vines has helped to give the wine outstanding complexity. It shows the typical freshness of Biondi Santi with red currant, pomegranate and orris root aromas, becoming more austere on the palate...