Produced for the first time in 1888, the Biondi-Santi Riserva was the first Brunello di Montalcino in history, and even today it is an extraordinary event when a new vintage of Riserva is announced at Tenuta Greppo, the Biondi-Santi main estate.
Renowned for its extraordinary longevity, this rare wine has been released only 40 times from 1888 till today and each production is extremely limited. Riserva is traditionally produced with grapes coming from only the ùoldest vineyards, of more than 25 years of age.
At the centre of the cellar at Tenuta Greppo there is a dark room, hidden away from the world, dedicated specifically to Riserva.
It is “La Storica”, the estate wine library where Biondi-Santi carefully refines the bottles of each Riserva vintage ever produced.
“La Storica” is an intimate place where the bottles lie neatly stacked in small cells divided by vintage, naked, wearing only a drop of bees wax to seal the cork and minimize oxydization.
The Riserva will be removed from La Storica only at the moment that it is sold. It is then dressed with the original label from its vintage, including “la lunetta” – the neck label which carries the number of each bottle, and the date of its departure from the cellar is hand written on the back label.
If a Riserva has been topped up and re-corked in the past, a special topping-up certificate will be placed around its neck, certifying when this delicate reconditioning has taken place.