Here are a few pictures from a visit last year to Gianni Brunelli
The vineyards are extremely well manicured. I love how the vines direct your gaze to the mountains, like a drawing done with technically perfect perspective lines. Farming is organic. The winery was founded by husband and wife team Gianni
and Laura Brunelli; they made wine together for over twenty years until sadly, Gianni passed away a few years ago. (read more here at avvinare
) Laura continues. Her personality is infectious-- she is full of calm energy, deeply spiritual, and she has a way of noticing beautiful things. Once she pulled the car over to point out the way that the shadows of the clouds passed over the Montalcino hills. In a way, this translates to the wines as well-- when she opened up a 2003 brunello she prefaced by saying "This is magic right now!" And it was!
Painter Richard Goodwin painted a portrait of Gianni's mother-- this portrait hangs in the restaurant (started & owned by the Brunellis) Osteria Le Logge
and is the theme on all of the wine/grappa/olive oil labels except the IGT.
Laura Brunelli examines her grapes and tests their phenolic ripeness before making the decision to harvest. She has two main vineyard areas in Montalcino; one in Podernovone and one in Le Chiuse di Sotto. Each terroir is vinified separately through malolactic, using only natural yeasts.
The Gianni Brunelli product line-up is classic and reflects the commitment to sustainability. Grape vines and olive trees have similar soil requirements and can both grow on rough terrain; as such they are often planted in tandem throughout Italy (and many other parts of the world). When olive oil and grappa are presented in a winery's product line it is a sign that the owners view the winery as a whole and strive toward sustainability. Olive trees and grape vines can grow in similar climates/topographies. Olive oil indicates a desire to make special use of land or careful microclimate adjustments that shelter vines from sharp winds. Grappa in a winery's product line indicates a desire to not waste: by fermenting and distilling the spent marc the grape vines provide one extra product before hitting the compost pile.
Following the photo above, from left to right we have:
Gianni Brunelli Grappa
made from 100% sangiovese
Gianni Brunelli Olive Oil
About the olive oil, translated from the website in true Brunelli poetry: "the wine is indeed fun and noise, the oil poise and silence." It's made from carefully selected organically grown olive trees, each olive is selected by hand, and the oil is extracted with a grinding stone.
Gianni Brunelli IGT Blend
This is the only wine that does not carry the signature picture of Gianni's mother on the label. Instead, the label is a poem about friendship, and hints at the blend of two varieties within: 80% sangiovese, 20% merlot.
Gianni Brunelli Riserva
The next bottle in line has a blue label and the picture of Gianni's mother.
Gianni Brunelli Brunello
The white label is Brunelo di Montalcino- this is a blend of two terroirs-- Podernovone and Le Chiuse di Sotto.
Gianni Brunelli Rosso di Montalcino
The red label is for Rosso di Montalcino.
In addition to running the Gianni Brunelli winery Laura is also a wildly successful restaurateur. Her place, Osteria Le Logge
(pictured above)is just off the main plaza in Sienna, and it is BUSY, and the food is fantastic. And if you go, try their house special wine: Gianni Brunelli. Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Montalcino Montalcino Montalcino Montalcino Montalcino Montalcino Montalcino Montalcino MontalcinoGianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli Gianni Brunelli