Poliziano | 538 Wine Notes

Rosso di Montepulciano 2014

The best examples of Rosso di Montepulciano are deliciously textured and perfumed. Poliziano is one of these examples. A Renaissance pearl, a papal city, a center of Etruscan origin based in Montepulciano, Pienza, Cortona, this is the historic terrain and culture of their wine. Nestled among hills and knolls, inspired by an ancient tradition of winemaking, their production has been cultivated here for over fifty years. Poliziano was started in 1961 with an initial 22 hectares of land and has grown over the years to reach its present size of 120 hectares, all planted to vineyards. Its name is an homage to the humanist poet Angelo Ambrogini (1454-1494), known as "Il Poliziano", who was born in Montepulciano.


Rosso di Montepulciano is an earlier drinking version of Vino Nobile di Montepulciano made from Sangiovese grapes. Sangiovese, the premier grape of Tuscany, is highly mutable, cloning easily. In the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano region, the preferred Sangiovese clone is called the ‘Prugnolo Gentile.’ It is here the grape achieves its most splendid form, finessing wines with bright and refreshing aromas of red cherries, roses, dried Italian herbs and a nice frame of acidity.

Amendments to the Rosso di Montepulciano DOC in 1999 defined the production zone as identical to that of Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; namely from vineyards within the Montepulciano commune in Tuscany, located at between 250 and 600 meters above sea level. The blend of grapes is a minimum of 70% Sangiovese and Prugnolo Gentile alongside a maximum 20% Canaiolo and a maximum 20% other permitted red varieties (e.g. Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon). It can be produced by simply downgrading grapes that are classified as Vino Nobile. Poliziano Winery however, does not compromise, as they carefully select a number of vineyards with particular characteristics in order to obtain a wine that is young, fruity, full-bodied but not rough. This selection process has allowed Poliziano to classify their Rosso di Montepulciano as the official second wine of their winery .

The Poliziano Rosso di Montepulciano is 80% Sangiovese and 20% Merlot. Fermentation is conducted in stainless-steel vats at a controlled temperature, with a process that includes repassing the must over the grape skins, adding body and texture to the wine. Fermentation and maceration take 10-12 days and the wine ages for a period of 8 months, 20-40% in second-use, "barriques" of American oak, and the remainder is refined in vats.

The wine is essentially a junior version of Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, meant to be drunk young after release, but can easily age for 5-8 years.

Sangiovese pairs with a wide range of foods because of its medium weighted body and savory character. Use Sangiovese’s savory as a congruent flavor with herbs and tomatoes. This technique will actually bring out more fruity flavors in the wine. A Sangiovese with high tannins will work perfectly with rich roasted meat, cured sausages and hard cheeses.

aris hovsepian