Andrea and Marcello Mantengoli’s parents and grandparents have been growers in Montalcino since 1933, but they never gave a second thought to becoming producers of Brunello. How could they? To them, only aristocrats, such as the Biondi-Santis, the Costantis, the Barbis and the Fraceschi d’Il Paggione, were worthy of making Brunello. This concept disappeared in the 1970s and 1980s when dozens of new Brunello estates were founded, mostly by growers like the Mantengoli family.
When their sons Andrea and Marcello joined them in 1988, anything was possible. At that time, the estate was just one hectare. With great energy and many years of hard work, the two brothers have expanded it to 50 hectares in total, with 9 hectares under vine. The imposing new winery was designed by Marcello, who is an architect. Total production is just 11,000 bottles per year, including Rosso di Montalcino as well as Brunello. Over time, La Serena’s Brunello has gained prominence beyond southern Tuscany.
La Serena is located in the zone of Torrenieri, in the north-east corner of Montalcino, near the famous cru of Montosoli, sharing its classic limestone-rich Tufo soil. The estate is Biodynamically farmed by Andrea, his wife Elisabetta, and their young son Giorgio. The high elevation - a very impressive 430m above sea level - has a very pronounced impact on the wine: slower ripening provides grapes that combine full phenolic ripeness and bracing acidity. Vinified in stainless steel then aged in Slavonian botti and old barriques, the wines are rich and full but very elegant. Their purity of fruit makes them immensely enjoyable to drink young, but they have the natural balance and finesse to age beautifully too, acquiring more and more typicity as they do.
The reputation of La Serena has continually grown since 1988, aided greatly by the efforts of two renowned consultants - agronomist Lucio Maruotti and winemaker Paolo Caciorgna. Paolo Caciorgna is La Serena’s consultant oenologist, on his way to becoming one of Italy’s most eminent winemaker. Originating from the picturesque Tuscany village of San Gimignano, his mission is to find the best vineyards and create wines that fully express their potential. With La Serena’s Brunello di Montalcino 2001 vintage, we are convinced that he has brilliantly achieved his goal.
La Serena’s Brunello di Montalcino "Riserva Gemini" is a true wine marvel. Only 2,000 bottles were produced, and we have a feeling that they will be sold out upon their arrival on the market. It is a very expressive wine. Above all, Paolo Caciorgna and Andrea Mantengoli (who cant’t stay put, just like the wine), always concoct pleasant surprises that are just waiting to tickle your taste buds. La Serena’s "Gemini" is always fascinating and represents a major point of reference as regards cellar-bound wines.