99pts Luca Gardini
The great tradition of Biondi-Santi’s Brunello in a refined and highly-drinkable interpretation. Nose with touches of red currant, hints of chinotto and bergamot and scents of lavender. The mouthfeel has density and tension, sapid tannins, a fruity-citrus finish and a nice persistence.
98pts Wine Enthusiast
Aromas of rose petal, dark spice, woodland berries and camphor form the nose on this fragrant, elegant wine. Loaded with finesse, the linear, savory palate features red cherry, orange zest, star anise and black tea alongside tightly wound, fine-grained tannins. Bright acidity keeps it impeccably balanced. It's still youthfully austere, with fantastic aging potential. Drink 2026–2041.
97+pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
From a benchmark vintage, the Biondi-Santi 2016 Brunello di Montalcino reveals a gorgeous appearance with medium concentration highlighted by shiny hues of garnet and dark ruby. The first thing you notice is the compact dark fruit and rather robust textural fiber and power presented here. You almost bite into this wine, and you taste some fine grain linked to the young tannins. That, with the fresh acidity that is the hallmark signature of this estate, guarantees long cellar aging, and I would put my money on this vintage for long-long-term longevity. The fruit is compact and supple with dried cherry, blue flower, iron ore and candied orange peel. There is tobacco, balsam herb and gardening soil in a supporting role, and the wine is beautifully fleshed out but also rich in this balanced growing season. It surely needs more time to come together with pinpoint precision, but the wine's elegance is a certainty.
The 2016 Brunello di Montalcino is a dark stallion of a wine that showcases both the depth and radiance of the vintage. At first, its bouquet is dark and earthy, yet quickly blossoms into an enthralling mix of musky red currants, wild peppery herbs, dusty rose and worn leather. While satiny in feel, it’s also sleek and lively, with a vibrant burst of sweet and sour citrus that enlivens its notes of tart cranberry and pomegranate, all wound tightly in a web of saline-minerals. Violet and lavender tones arch across the palate over a core of silky tannins that nicely frame the experience, as a hint of balsamic spice slowly tapers off. The 2016 is one of the most deep and balanced Brunellos that I’ve ever experienced from Biondi Santi. If this is the Annata, then I can only imagine what the Riserva might bring to the table. Something of note is that in 2016, production was down by 15% following the abundant 2015 vintage and the dry conditions in the early part of the season.
96pts James Suckling
A little shy and understated on the nose now, with savory red plums, ash, pretty red berries, new leather and minerals. Very nimble, juicy and polished on the palate with medium body and a mouthful of seamless and evenly enveloped tannins. A linear and refined expression with an austere edge. Lay it down until 2026, to allow it to unfurl more complexity.
97pts Wine Spectator
This features a well of blackberry and black cherry flavors. The dense tannins are easily matched by the concentrated flavors, and this shows fine potential, despite the compact finish now. Best from 2025-2045. From Italy.
Comparing 2015 with 2016, technical director Federico Radi says that the latter is more balanced and aromatic owing to overall cooler temperatures in July and August. It is certainly more in line with Biondi Santi’s angular, austere style and unmistakable in its class and potential. With the utmost restraint, flinty mineral notes make way for scents of dried leaves, forest wildflowers and fresh mint. Perfectly poised on the palate, this is midweight yet plumbs great depths, expressing pomegranate, fennel and orange peel. While its tannins have a certain rigidity and are decidedly linear in direction, they are not massive. It is a rather sneaky wine that needs a few more years in the cellar. Brilliantly succulent finish.