The 1975 Barbi Brunello de Montalcino, with 13% alcohol scored 17+ points out of the Dionysian 20. It cost below $15 back then, and at 44 years old, the wine is hold at its peak.

Black, dark subtle fruits laced with wood and smoke, and a well balanced body, made the wine prove what Brunello producers say, “Age Brunello for a decade or two and open them two or three hours before drinking. Younger ones need to be opened at lunch time for use at dinner.


It’s ideal with wild boar, but I served it with a heavy meat sauce over pasta. It was the feature of the evening. Wines like this are decanted prior to visiting a BYOB or taking to a friends house.

The Fattoria Del Barbi Riserva was once among the top three Brunello producers. It has slacked off in recent years and others have taken its place. This was the final bottle of a case I got in New York in 1980. In Vino Veritas.