Brunello producers protest proposed appellation changes

Three Montalcino wineries, including two of its most famous producers, have sent open letters to the Brunello producers association protesting proposed changes that would allow bottlers to add grapes other than Sangiovese to their Rosso di Montalcino (currently, appellation regulations require that both Rosso di Montalcino and Brunello di Montalcino be made with 100% Sangiovese grapes).

The authors of the first letter to be sent — Francesco Illy and Andrea Machetti of the Mastrojanni winery — point out that Montalcino bottlers already have an appellation that allows them to blend international grape varieties with Sangiovese: Sant’Antimo DOC.

They ask: “Why has this type of wine failed to take off? In our humble opinion, because it is not a winner.”

The proposed change, they write, “would dilute the authenticity of our wines,” causing them to be lost in the “immense” crowd of similar wines made throughout the world. The result, they say, would “damage the territory and secondarily the producers.”

For the entire text of the letter (in Italian), click here.

Wineries Lisini and Campi di Fonterenza also have sent open letters to the producers association protesting the proposed change.


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