Siro Pacenti Brunello di Montalcino PS Riserva 2015
|Region||Italy, Tuscany, Brunello di Montalcino|
The PS is the sole single vineyard bottle produced by Siro Pacenti, with only 1000 bottles and 200 magnums being produced. PS is sourced from vines planted by Siro Pacenti in the early 1970s on the northwest side of Montalcino and is only produced in the best vintages. The 2015 PS is rich and inviting, with sweet blackberry and plum fruit, licorice, and crushed lavender. The palate is full, though it has more freshness than the nose would suggest, with gripping tannins and energetic acidity to match. The warmth of the vintage is tangible, and for that reason I believe the 2016 will have some edge in the long haul for aging potential. As with the rest of the Brunello line-up, the PS spent two years in French oak of 225 liters that is noticeable but poised for a polished style. Enjoy over the next 15 years.
Having tasted this wine in a preview capacity a few years back, it's exciting to compare my past impressions to the current ones. In the case of the Siro Pacenti 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva PS, I found that the oak signature was very strong back then and that it remains very strong, even too strong today. There's beauty here, no doubt, but the stylistic preference for 100% new oak on Sangiovese is forever controversial and debatable. I find that it no longer jibes with my palate, although from an intellectual point of view it's impossible not to recognize the craftsmanship. The aging protocol is set forth by a gradually increasing grain and toast regimen with custom barrels ordered from tonnellerie Taransaud. The wine is aged in new oak for two years and racked every three months for the first year of aging. Detail-oriented farming translates into an impressive 600 to 700 hours of manual work per hectare. The wine's appearance is almost impenetrable, and the bouquet is well-integrated with black fruit, spice and balsam notes, but those tannins are just too much. This wine was not produced in 2013 or 2014, and this 2015 release counts 1,000 bottles and 200 magnums. In 2013, all the fruit went to the Brunello Vecchie Vigne instead. My big-picture takeaway is that I'd like to see more Sangiovese purity, but hats-off to the impeccable winemaking.
Dark cherries, cloves and dusty rose lift up from the aromatically stunning 2015 Brunello di Montalcino Riserva PS. This gains in depth and richness with time in the glass, as hints of plum sauce and sage evolve. You can feel the sheer weight of the old vines here, soaking the palate with velvety depths of spicy red and black fruits, but with a cooling wave of minty herbs. Soft, sweet tannins gain a salty and very mineral twang under an air of savory herbs and tobacco, showing incredibly long and structured yet massively dark, like a black hole of concentration. Frankly, I underestimated this wine the last time I tasted it, and I am happy to upgrade my score.
Vanilla and toasty oak signal this fresh, cherry-flavored red, giving added tannic clout. This results in a dry, astringent finish, at least for now, that detracts from the fruit. Aeration over a few hours brought the fruit more in line with the tannins. Shows fine length. Best from 2025 through 2040.
Eucalyptus oil, forest-floor, leather, French oak and red-woodland-berry aromas slowly take shape in the glass. Youthfully austere, the tight, firmly structured palate offers dried cherry, pomegranate, espresso and star anise set against a backbone of close-grained tannins that clench the finish. Give it time to fully develop. Drink after 2025.