Marco Caprai, the young entrepreneur who created a name and a market for the wines of Montefalco in Umbria all by himself, has a lot more company in the zone than when he started, a period in which Sagrantino was considered a grape for dessert wines and little else. Not that he has all that much to worry about – he started working on his vineyards over 15 years ago, when everyone else was asleep at the switch, and he also enjoyed the not inconsiderable advantage of the services of consulting winemaker Attilio Pagli. About this professional, whose name is too little known outside of Italy, the only thing I wish to say is that no Italian oenologist has given me more pleasure with his wines over the last 20 years, starting with the superb 1985 Brunello di Montalcino of Giulio Salvioni, made when Pagli was a mere 22 years old.
The 2001 Montefalco Sagrantino 25 Anni, the selection but 50,000 bottles worth, is warmer, ampler, and decisively more powerful on the nose, richer and fuller in flavor than the regular bottling, but with a velvet in the texture that makes it already approachable. There are, nonetheless, easily 15 years of exceptional drinking ahead. 95RP