Brunello di Montalcino best vintages, complete guide

Updated: May 5, 2018


Francesco holding a bottle of Brunello Biondi Santi Riserva 1955, 8000$ worth!

Every year the Consorzio del Vino Brunello di Montalcino classifies the new wine production in order to Communicate the information regarding the Montalcino harvest and its wines Brunello di Montalcino, Rosso di Montalcino, Moscadello di Montalcino and Sant’Antimo.

The evaluation takes place in the months of January of every year, by having wine samples of the latest harvest undergo chemical/physical and organoleptic analyses.

The Tasting Committee that carries out the tests is made up of 20 technicians operating in Montalcino, with extensive experience in the production of this area.


The evaluation is expressed in stars, corresponding to the following classification:

- insufficent vintage ☆ (one star) - fair vintage ☆ ☆ (two stars) - good vintage ☆ ☆ ☆ (three stars) - exellent vintage ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ (four stars) - outstanding vintage ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ (five stars)

The declaration of the stars assigned to the vintage takes place in February each year, as part of the event "BENVENUTO BRUNELLO".


Evaluation in stars of the vintages from 1945 to date, ratings are from Wine Spectator's Brunello vintage charts:

1945 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1946 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1947 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1948 ☆ ☆

1949 ☆ ☆ ☆

1950 ☆ ☆ ☆

1951 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1952 ☆ ☆ ☆

1953 ☆ ☆ ☆

1954 ☆ ☆

1955 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ The 'vintage of the century' according to Mr Franco Biondi Santi, I have owned and sold to a lucky member 1 bottle of legendary 1955 Biondi Santi Riserva, aka one of 12 best wines of the 20th century!

1956 ☆ ☆

1957 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1958 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1959 ☆ ☆ ☆

1960 ☆ ☆ ☆

1961 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1962 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1963 ☆ ☆ ☆

1964 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ I have opened(and of course, tasted,lol) one bottle of Col d'Orcia Riserva 1964 for Michelle and Barack Obama...the most positive surprise of my sommelier life: wine still vibrant and lively, I would say it can still go for years!

1965 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1966 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1967 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1968 ☆ ☆ ☆

1969 ☆ ☆

1970 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1971 ☆ ☆ ☆

1972 ☆

1973 ☆ ☆ ☆

1974 ☆ ☆

1975 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1976 ☆

1977 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1978 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1979 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1980 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1981 ☆ ☆ ☆

1982 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1983 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1984 ☆

1985 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1986 ☆ ☆ ☆

1987 ☆ ☆ ☆

1988 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1989 ☆ ☆

1990 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1991 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1992 ☆ ☆

1993 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 1994 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

1995 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 92pts. Drink. Structured and firm, yet fruity; very good indeed 1996 ☆ ☆ ☆ 85pts. Drink. Fruity and aromatic, but slightly diluted 1997 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 99pts. Drink or hold. Extremely aromatic; structured and racy 1998 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 91pts. Drink. Perfumed, harmonious and delicious 1999 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 97 pts. Drink. Generous, tannic and fruity; velvety in texture 2000 ☆ ☆ ☆ 88 pts. Drink. Aromatic, soft; for early drinking 2001 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 98pts. Drink or hold. Great wines with wonderful structure, focus and balance; better than from barrel 2002 ☆ ☆ 78 pts. Past peak. A wet growing season and harvest made mediocre wines 2003 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 88 pts. Drink. Rich, powerful and thick; some wines lack focus 2004 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 97 pts. Drink or hold. Wonderfully perfumed, majestically refined Brunellos with an excellent balance of fruit and refined tannins. Reducing yields was key to quality 2005 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 89 pts.DrinkRains during the harvest damped what could have been an amazing year, but still a very good vintage. Many wines for early drinking 2006 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 95 pts. Hold. Complex and powerful wines that impress with ripe yet fresh fruit, firm, dense structures and fine balance 2007 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 93 pts.Drink .Hotter and riper than 2006; fruit-forward, rich and elegant, offering immediate charm and softer structures 2008 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 91pts. Drink or hold. A cool growing season with rain at harvest; those who waited produced aromatic, balanced and elegant wines . In my opinion this vintage is one of underdogs in Montalcino! 2009 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 89 pts. Drink or holdWarm summer gave elegant, fruity and balanced wines in the north; denser and more muscular in the south. Bright fruit, for early enjoyment 2010 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 98 pts. Hold. Perfect late summer weather resulted in ideal ripening for Sangiovese; wines are fresh, elegant, balanced and structured, with ample ripe fruit flavors. The best should age beautifully 2011 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 92 pts. Drink or hold. A warm year with a heat spike in August, producing forward wines with ample fruit. The best are lively and balanced; ripe and dense in the south 2012 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 96 pts. Drink or hold. A year of extreme weather, producing rich, concentrated wines with ripe fruit and freshness; the best have the structure to age 2013 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ Drink or hold, but better hold. A cool year with much rain; classic vibrant brunello with mineral notes. 2014 ☆ ☆ ☆ 2015 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ 2016 ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆


Source, Consorzio del Brunello di Montalcino: http://www.consorziobrunellodimontalcino.it/index.php?p=25&lg=en

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