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- Drinking Window:
- 97 AG; 94-96 pts WA
Siepi, Fonterutoli’s Merlot/Sangiovese blend, is absolutely gorgeous in 2018. Rich, pliant and creamy, Siepi offers all of the seductiveness of Merlot with the bright acids and grip of Sangiovese. Inky blue/purplish fruit, lavender, dried herbs, spice, licorice and new leather meld together in an open-knit, inviting Tuscan red with no hard edges and tons of allure shaped by alberese soils with a good bit of clay. The 2018 is an undeniably sexy wine with so much immediacy. Siepi (the wine) is built on a core of holdings from Siepi, a historic property dating back to the 1400s, plus holdings from the broader Fonterutoli estate. Merlot and Sangiovese lots are harvested, vinified and aged separately. The 2018 saw long macerations 20 or more days, followed by 16-17 months in French oak, with a preference for 225L barrels for Merlot and larger 500L tonneaux for the Sangiovese, which also spent a bit less time in oak. The final blend was assembled and then the wine spent 5-6 months in cement, a recent change made for the first time in 2017 that really seems to let the purity of the fruit come out. The 2018 is positively stellar and also one of the very best editions in recent memory. Don’t miss it.
Tasted from barrel, the Mazzei 2018 Siepi is a dark and robust Tuscan red with a heavy center of gravity. This medium to full-bodied blend of Sangiovese and Merlot offers plenty of spice, plum, tobacco and blue flower. This wine offers beautiful intensity and richness with an especially smooth texture. It wraps thickly over the palate, imparting more dark fruit and savory spice along the way. Monica Larner