Vino Nobile di Montepulciano:
Boscarelli from the 2005, 2006, and 2007 Vintages

Boscarrelli Montepuliano Boscarelli is one of the better producers in Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. Located in the Cervognano district, about 6 km from the walled Renaissance city of Montepulciano proper, the 18 ha estate has 13 ha of alluvial sand, clay, and limestone vineyards and is managed by Paola de Ferrari Corradi and sons Luca and Nicolò. Maurizio Castelli is winemaker. Paola recently purchased a second property in Cortona, a beautiful Tuscan hillside town where we once spent a glorious summer holiday in a rustic villa. We used to get our Pecorino cheese at the market in Montepulciano. Though small (about 5000 inhabitants), Montepulciano has many charms. On the last Sunday of August, the eight quarters of Montepulciano compete in a barrel-rolling contest through the narrow streets of the town.

The Vino Nobile di Montepulciano DOCG (granted in 1980) makes wines from predominantly Sangiovese (actually, Prugnolo Gentile, the same clone used in Brunello di Montalcino). Canaiolo is also part of the blend and so usually is Mammolo, a grape that contributes violet floral aromas. The wine is required to be aged in oak botti for two years.

The four bottles of Boscarelli tasted here are from the 2005-7 vintages. While 2005 was a good vintage, 2006 is widely regarded as one of the best vintages of the past decade. The 2007 vintage was more challenging than the 2006 with somewhat aggressive acidity that will take longer than usual to soften. The importer is Empson of Alexandria, VA

Boscarelli 2006 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano ($33) 90+

This bright medium ruby Sangiovese-based blend is aged in various size oak vessels for 24 months. It shows beautiful purity of fresh red fruit with light herbal notes on the nose. On the attack, it’s soft and fresh with a fruit forward palate of cherry fruit, earth notes, good acidity, and firm, ripe tannins. Not a terribly complicated wine but absolutely delicious! 50 thousand bottles produced.

Boscarelli 2007 Vino Nobile di Montepucliano ($33) 89

This is a fruit forward wine that is still a baby and will benefit from more time in bottle.. It starts off with fragrant red cherry and berry aromas and a soft attack with gobs of fresh red and blue berry fruit. It’s a well-balanced that’s very young still, showing high acids and dry tannins. It’s a wine that should evolve with another year or two in bottle and pair nicely with pasta dishes.

Boscarelli 2005 Nocio dei Boscarelli Vino Nobile di Montepulciano ($87) 91

Nocio de Boscarelli, a blend of Sangiovese (80%), Mammolo (5%) and Merlot (15%), is sourced from a special 3 ha parcel of 40 year old vines called Vigna del Nocio. It’s aged 18-24 months in new French and Slavonian oak. The wine is medium ruby with a garnet-tinged rim. It shows aromas of baking spice, earth, sandalwood and dried cherries on the nose and has an elegant, medium weight palate with very firm, slightly astringent tannins. There are nice dried cherry fruit flavors with earth and vanilla oak notes on the palate. This is a wine that will improve with more time in bottle. If you can’t wait, open and decant so it can breathe a couple of hours before serving. Only 6 thousand bottles produced.

Boscarelli 2006 Nocio dei Boscarelli Vino Nobile di Montepulciano ($87) 91

The 2006 Nocio dei Boscarelli is a complete, balanced and nicely structured wine that is attractive from beginning to finish. The aroma of smoke, earth, cedar and dark red fruit offer up a tantalizing bouquet. The palate is equally complex with a mélange of forest floor, cedar, mocha, and underlying sweet dark fruit. It finishes very long. This wine still shows very firm tannins, so we’d suggest keeping it a year or two more before drinking. By that time, it should be still more integrated and interesting.

Mike Potashnik and Don Winkler