Many thanks for reader, Paolo, for alerting me about this cogent piece on the recent scandal about the alleged pollution of Brunello posted to Jancis Robinson's site. It would be awful of me to reprint this fabulous letter from Italy that writer (and biodynamic consultant ?) Monte Walden penned in her "Don't Quote Me" pages of her Purple ones, and so I won't ---except for this exerpt: ** What is incontrovertible is that the least scrupulous producers and the more gullible wine writers have combined to push the Brunello 'myth'. For instance, the most critically acclaimed Brunello of recent years (a 2001) was described by an American publication as having picture postcard vineyards, but whenever I drive past mud has leached from the vineyard on to road from heavy use of vineyard tractors. Compacted, eroding vineyards that are heavily sprayed like this one is don't normally produce world-beating wines. The wine was said to show intense, full-bodied, velvet-like chocolate and black fruit flavours. None are typical flavour or texture characteristics of Sangiovese, especially one grown on the kind of heavy, alluvial, low lying, compacted clay soils converted from cereal crops this producer has. Chocolate suggests to me that brown, cocoa-like tannin powder was added for mouthfeel. I know of a company north of Siena that has sold fruit concentrate used in jam-making (and illegal for Brunello) in the Brunello zone. Cash sale, no invoice, no paper trail, no risk of getting caught. If used in a Brunello it would provide the kind of taste profile ascribed to this wine. ** The writing is impassioned, takes no prisoners, believable (because the source is) and tells me that if this stuff appears regularly on Jancis' website, it's worth the annual fee.