We’ve written plenty of articles about the perfect wines for hiding under a blanket away from the cold. But what about for those who still want to explore the outdoors despite the freezing temperatures?
If the winter means you can finally hit the slopes or take advantage of your favorite trail being empty of fair-weather hikers, you’re going to need to have a great wine waiting for you when you get back, like a Tuscan red from Vino Nobile di Montepulciano or Morellino di Scansano. Here are some of our top finds at all different price points.
Boscarelli 2015 Costa Grande (Vino Nobile di Montepulciano); $95, 95 points. Made entirely with Sangiovese, this offers enticing aromas of exotic spice, ripe black-skinned fruit, tilled soil, French oak and a whiff of leather. The full-bodied palate boasts structure, elegance and tension, delivering juicy wild cherry, raspberry, star anise and espresso set against firm fine-grained tannins. Drink 2022–2030. Empson USA Ltd. Cellar Selection. —Kerin O’Keefe
Salcheto 2015 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; $24, 94 points. Made with organically cultivated Sangiovese, this fragrant elegant red opens with enticing scents of underbrush, sunbaked earth, wild berry, violet, crushed mint and a balsamic whiff of camphor. Smooth and savory, the linear palate has surprising vibrancy for such a hot vintage, delivering juicy Marasca cherry, strawberry compote, star anise and white pepper. Elegant fine-grained tannins lend polished support while a coffee note lingers on the close. Drink through 2025. Massanois Imports. Editors’ Choice. —K.O.
Trerose 2016 Vigna Santa Caterina (Vino Nobile di Montepulciano); $40, 93 points. Fragrant and refined, this elegant red offers enticing scents of woodland berry, pressed rose, violet and culinary spice. The polished focused palate delivers ripe Marasca cherry, raspberry compote, star anise and clove set against precise fine-grained tannins. Drink 2020–2030. Taub Family Selections. Editors’ Choice. —K.O.
Canneto 2015 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; $32, 92 points. Crushed mint, toasted oak, camphor, wild-berry and dark-spice aromas meld together in the glass. The rounded full-bodied palate doles out layers of fleshy black cherry, ripe plum, oak-driven spice and espresso alongside polished well-integrated tannins. It closes on a star anise note. Drink through 2025. Selected Estates of Europe Ltd. —K.O.
Villa S. Anna 2015 Poldo (Vino Nobile di Montepulciano); $50, 91 points. Aromas of ripe black-skinned fruit, baking spice, tilled soil, eucalyptus and a whiff of black olive fill the glass. The palate is linear, lean and elegant, offering dried morello cherry, raspberry, crushed herb and star anise alongside a gamy note. Taut close-grained tannins leave a firm finish. Drink 2020 2027. Rosenthal Wine Merchant. —K.O.
Grillesino 2017 Battiferro (Morellino di Scansano); $20, 90 points. Fruity aromas of ripe woodland berry and red plum mingle with scents of blue flower. Round and juicy, the savory supple palate offers succulent Marasca cherry, raspberry compote and baking spice alongside lithe tannins. It doesn’t have any complexity, but it is delicious. Drink through 2019 to capture the succulent fruit. Liber USA. —K.O.
Cantina del Giusto 2015 San Claudio II (Vino Nobile di Montepulciano); $23, 90 points. Forest floor, ripe black plum, baking spice and a balsamic note form the nose. The brooding palate offers dried cherry, prune, sandalwood and licorice framed in firm fine-grained tannins. Drink 2022–2027. H. Mercer Wine & Spirit Imports. —K.O.
Gattavecchi 2015 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; $25, 90 points. This offers aromas of ripe black plum, blue flower and exotic spice. The round juicy palate shows mature black cherry, prune and baking spice alongside supple fine-grained tannins. It’s already accessible so drink over the next few years to enjoy the fruit flavors. Deutsch Family Wine and Spirits. —K.O.
Val delle Rose 2015 Poggio al Leone Riserva (Morellino di Scansano); $25, 90 points. Aromas of scorched earth, ripe plum, new leather and baking spice fill the glass. The full-bodied accessible palate offers dried black cherry, prune and licorice set against polished tannins. Drink through 2022. Webster Barnes LLC. —K.O.
Bindella 2015 Vino Nobile di Montepulciano; $26, 90 points. Aromas of exotic spice, crushed herb, menthol and rose petal form the nose. The palate is lean, linear but elegant, offering dried cherry, sage and orange zest while licorice and espresso notes provide backup. Taut fine-grained tannins lend firm support. Drink 2022–2028. Frederick Wildman & Sons, Ltd. —K.O.
Montemercurio 2012 Messaggero (Vino Nobile di Montepulciano); $35, 90 points. Underbrush, tobacco-leaf, sunbaked soil and baked plum aromas form the nose. The rounded full-bodied palate offers prune, mature black cherry and licorice alongside supple fine-grained tannins. Drink sooner rather than later to capture the brooding fruit. Golden Vines. —K.O.
Bruni 2017 Marteto (Morellino di Scansano); $12, 88 points. Woodland berry and grilled herb aromas lift out of the glass. Soft and juicy, the palate doles out succulent morello cherry and clove wrapped up in rounded tannins. Drink through 2020. Vias Imports. Best Buy. —K.O.
Fattoria Mantellassi 2017 Mentore (Morellino di Scansano); $13, 88 points. Ripe black-skinned fruit, eucalyptus and Mediterranean scrub aromas shape the nose. The rounded straightforward palate doles out fleshy Marasca cherry and licorice accompanied by dusty tannins. Drink through 2019. Deutsch Family Wine and Spirits. Best Buy. —K.O.