Conti Costanti Brunello is quite flash, and this Riserva was rather pricy when purchased a decade ago; I haven’t dared look at prices in ages. I hope it has not got too wildly expensive as this was a total delight to drink and was great with dinner. Dinner was Scotch eggs (again).
The label for this wine has been knocking around my cellar, loose and detached from the bottle, for some time now. I was concerned about ever finding the wine. Luckily, the Editor and I write on all of our bottles to guard against such eventualities and you can see from the picture that the bottle was still identifiable.
Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 1997, Conti Costanti
This doesn’t smell too different from the last bottle I popped a decade ago. It has a lot of ripe fruit of a bitter cherry flavour, and there is something slightly floral about it. Even though it is obviously quite boozy it has good elegance and doesn’t stray into being soupy or jammy. Indeed, I had a 1997 Fuligni Riserva recently and that seemed far more overblown than this sculpted little number. It smells like it needs a bit of air, but only a few minutes in the glass has it open and giving, showing highly attractive, stylish and classy characters which make me really look forward to drinking it. So I will. Wow, quite a stunner! There is obvious bitterness and reasonably high acidity, but it is a really lovely, enjoyable drink of class and complexity. The fruit is lovely, ripe and ravishing, but not over-stated. It has good tannins too, which are quite strong and bitter whilst remaining silky and attractive. The whole thing seems harmonious and highly enjoyable; a wine of pleasure and personality. That being said, I’m not sure if I really needed to have kept it for so long. Sure, it seems a tad softer and more round, but it hasn’t changed very much. Moreover, I rather like wines when they throb with life and excitement at a young stage in their development. It hasn’t got any worse, for sure, and it’s a cracking wine but I don’t think keeping it has done much for me in terms of giving greater gratification.
The Scotch eggs for dinner were spiffing. Editor Dani is a beezer Skegg Chef and he’s got his Scotch egg recipe worked out perfectly. The sausage meat he used came from Beechcroft Direct. Their Oxford Sandy and Black pork meat is just the cat’s arse – I cannot recommend any meat for Skeggs more highly.