Brunello di Montalcino can be problematic from a sustainability perspective in that many growers farm conventionally and monoculture is the norm. Organic growing is few and far between, but the estates that raise the grapes organically or biodynamically tend to achieve greater purity of fruit.
Collemattoni is an example of how organic grape growing can create beautifully expressive, pure fruited Sangiovese Grosso, and elegance – even in a powerhouse vintage like 2015.
Sant’Angelo in Colle
The winery lies south of the town of Montalcino and north of the river Orcia near Sant’Angelo in Colle. Its five vineyards are spread across various sites from east to west just north of the Orcia river. Sant’Angelo is distinct from the traditional growing zones near the town of Montalcino. First off, the region is much warmer and much drier than any other subzone for Brunello. The plains of Sant’Angelo is the region of mass produced Brunello and home to the largest estates: Argiano, Col d’Orcia, Il Poggione and Banfi. However, in the hills nearest to the village you will find mostly small wineries, including Collemattoni. The hills provide cover and coolness from elevation and aspect that allow the wines to mitigate some of the heat of the region. The plains, by contrast, are so warm that most wines made on them are quite alcoholic, soft in tannin and acidity and forward for early drinking. There are those in Montalcino who question the legitimacy of the plains around Sant’Angelo being included in the DOCG.
Collemattoni’s holdings avoid the plains, and are all situated at higher elevations that range from 350m-450m above sea level.
The 2015 Rosso from Collemattoni is an outstanding example of Sangiovese Gross grown in the southern part of the Montalcino zone. It is fruity and forward, with soft tannins, and a wonderful purity of fruit that makes it extremely easy to drink. However, it avoids entirely over-extraction and overt wood. It is a good candidate for simple dining with pastas and pizzas and not a lot of reflection.
Production is traditional, with de-stalking and then fermentation in steel before aging in Slavonian Oak.
~$40 at Jak’s Liquor Store