Poliziano Vino Nobile di Montepulciano 2015
Once the vacation spot of the Pope and a very noble wine indeed – Vino Nobile di Montepulicano has the odds stacked against it – it’s by far the least-known of Tuscany’s three famous siblings (the other two being Brunello and Chianti Classico Riserva). Its village shares the name of a grape with another region (Montepulicano) and as a wine-making region, it nearly went extinct in the 1970s.
But, what I am here to tell you today is that Vino Nobile di Montepulicano, in particular THIS Vino Nobile di Montepulicano, is simply an Incredible Italian Wine Buy.
Vs. Brunello – Vino Nobile is the same grape, is usually made with the same amount of oak, and since its near-extinction has climbed its way back into the foreground ONLY based on the quality of its production. The six major producers in the region have formed a quality consortium to take their wines, and the region, to the highest of quality. True, the region is farther inland than Brunello and is therefore cooler. Yet I would argue that this exposition gives the wines an elegant mineral balance – an added attraction, rather than making them lesser.
Vs. Chianti Classico Riserva – The story is almost the same as Brunello – same grape, oak, aging. But in Vino Nobile you don’t have the huge ups and downs of quality or stylistic variation. Vino Nobile is based on Sangiovese pure and simple, and it brings great Italian goodness to your table and glass.
But for one small thing.
Good Brunello producers charge $70 a bottle, and the exceptional, the highest charge $700. Chianti may start incredibly low, but for Riserva, and from the best producers, it quickly climbs to $50, if not $100, a bottle.
And what you have here, with Poliziano’s Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, is one of the top six producers in the region, putting fine effort into this tremendous wine, and at a fraction of those prices:
2015 is a great vintage for Tuscany, and this wine shows it – a volume of richness of dark blackberries, black cherries and ripe blueberries envelops the senses, opening up with a succulent savory minerality as well. I have always believed that the name describes the wine – Vino Nobile, to my humble palate, tastes like the purest, most noble rendition of Sangiovese there is. Something about its fruit, savory, and mineral qualities is regal, elegant and frankly, soul-satisfying. The wine drinks like this now, but trust me – I love cellaring Vino Nobile, and there is no rush. In 2030, this bottle will still be drinking in its prime.
For someone who loves the highest of high-tier Italian wines, but also likes to party with lots of people for hours and hours (and we’ve got magnums!) – this is the wine you need for the holiday season.
Here is one of the top regions in Tuscany, a wine from one of its top producers, in an outstanding vintage – at a price that blows away any other wine from those categories.