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label La Brancaia (Tuscany) Brancaia 1997
Awarded "3 Bicchieri" by Gambero Rosso, this Sangiovesi/Cabernet blend has an immediately impressive and seductive nose, wafting concentrated aromas of blackcurrant and ripe cherry, tobacco, cedar, vanilla and dark, chocolaty plum. There's an impression of claret-like structure on the palate, the black fruit flavours are edged with fine tannic grip and are tightly-focused, only opening in the mouth as the wine is swirled around the tongue. That savoury quality is backed up by quite subtle oak and an earthy depth, with moderate acidity. The wine is concentrated and rich, yet retains a lot of elegance and balance into a long finish. Drinking well, but would surely benefit from eight to twelve years more cellaring. (11/00).