Having tasted nearly 170 wines from the vintage, James Suckling finds these wines have a lot in common with the legendary 2010 vintage and are most like the 2004s, a harmonious and gorgeous year for Brunellos.

These are wines with beautiful aromas, vibrant fruit, lively acidity, and ultra-fine tannins.

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Ciacci Piccolomini d’Aragona Brunello di Montalcino Pianrosso 2012

This is all about finesse and beauty with such great length and polish. It literally melts in your mouth. Full-bodied yet agile and vivid. So many undertones of cedar, berries, cream and light toffee. Fabulous. Contender for the wine of the vintage.  97 points

Castiglion del Bosco Brunello di Montalcino 2012

This shows pure and fresh fruit that many others don’t have. Also, there are plenty of linear tannins. Precise and beautiful. Medium to full body. Persistent finish. Better in 2019. 96 points

La Magia Brunello di Montalcino 2012

Incredible purity of fruit with plums, cherries and berries. Full body, ripe and silky tannins and a fantastically long finish. Love the bitter-orange undertone. Drink in 2020. 96 points

San Filippo Brunello di Montalcino Le Lucere 2012

This is an incredible 2012 with fantastic depth, richness, focus and tension. Full body, polished and velvety tannins and a long and flavourful finish. Goes on for minutes. Better in 2020 but a joy to taste now. One of the wines of the vintage. 98 points

La Rasina Brunello di Montalcino 2012

A wonderfully precise and clear red with cherry, plum and floral character. Hints of lemon. Full body and firm and velvety tannins. Long and tannic, but still shows polish. Better in 2020. 96 points

Argiano Brunello di Montalcino 2012

Fantastically complex aromas of spices, dried flowers and plums follow through to a full body, integrated and polished tannins and a superb finish. This is a 2012 Brunello with it all. Drink in 2018.  96 points

Casanuova delle Cerbaie Brunello di Montalcino 2012

Beautiful clarity on the nose with lavender, raspberry and violet aromas. Medium to full body, firm and silky tannins and a long, fresh and simply fantastic finish. Best ever. Better in 2021.  96 points

Livio Sassetti Brunello di Montalcino 2012

Complex aromas of dried figs, dark fruits and hints of walnuts and dried meat. Full body, dense and polished palate. Velvety and poised tannins and a flavourful finish. Yet always refined and beautiful. You will want to drink it now and can, but it has a beautiful future. 98 points

Lazzeretti Brunello di Montalcino 2012

Forest-floor and dried-cherry aromas follow through to a medium to full body, decadent flavours and ripe and polished tannins. Great texture. Goes on for minutes. Excellent! Drink or hold. 96 points

Altesino Brunello di Montalcino Montosoli 2012

Fantastic aromas of blueberries, plums, bark and wet earth follow through to a full body, velvety and polished tannins, and a wonderful refined and persistent finish. Drink in 2019 and onwards. 97 points

 To see the full list of Brunello Montalcino top 100 wines, visit jamessuckling.com

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Tags: James Suckling, Brunello wine, wine recommendations, vintage wine