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Clonal Selection Studies

In the early 1980s, working in collaboration with the University of Milan and its Professor Attilio Scienza in particular, Banfi undertook a groundbreaking research project focused on the Sangiovese vine. 

The research immediately proved to be complex. An initial analysis found there to be present, just on the Banfi estate and the immediately surrounding area, about 650 different clones of Sangiovese.

Studies confirmed that Sangiovese is a family of vines much more diverse than those of typical French varietals, with greater variability and higher sensitivity to geo-climatic conditions.

The first group of clones studied was narrowed down to a selection of 180. These were planted in a catalogue vineyard and then microvinified separately, leading to a final selection of 15 clones that represent the best characteristics of this exceptional grape.

Two of the great characteristics of Sangiovese are its complexity and its variability: for this reason, the goal of the research was not to identify one “super” clone, but a group of clones that together could best express this wealth. 

As a result, starting in 1992 all of the new plantings of Sangiovese on our estate are characterized by the presence of at least three or four selected clones that are complementary to each other, chosen for the individual characteristics of the soils in each vineyard site.

The Sangiovese Clonal Research

Clone Janus 50

JANUS 50 is the backbone of the wine with its well developed tannins and its consistency in delivering a well balanced product even in less than exceptional vintages. It contributes to all the aromatic aspects that characterize the terroir of Brunello di Montalcino, with its complex fruity bouquet and good structure.

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Clone Janus 10

JANUS 10 has a bright ruby colour which is typical of Sangiovese. It has an intense perfume with notes of violets, cassis, black pepper and hints of tobacco. It is extremely elegant and with its smooth body allows for a perfect integration of the other clones, imparting to the wine a beautiful spicy character that significantly increases its complexity and overall quality.

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Clone BF 30

BF 30 has a wonderfully intense deep garnet colour with purple hues. This clone strongly contributes in both the structure and the floral aromas, giving power and finesse to the wine. Perfume of violets, ripe fruit, tart cherries with hints of smoke. Notes of tobacco are more or less pronounced depending on seasonal conditions.

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Clonal Blend

Janus 50 - 50%, Janus 10 - 20%, BF 30 - 30% The result of joining these three clones together is a Brunello that attains the result of perfectly matched elegance and power. It has a deep and intense colour quite unheard of for a Sangiovese. Aromas of red fruits, plums, cherries and ripe blackberries, well balanced with hints of vanilla. On the palate the wine opens with pleasant notes of licorice, tobacco and black olives. The tannins are thick and silky, extremely rich but not overpowering, a sure sign of an enormous ageing potential.

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