I said last time that I'd been planning on plugging Brahms, but I got a little distracted by some other awesome stuff. And yeah, it feels like a bit of a cop-out to plug one of the most famous Romantic composers, but compared to his contemporaries, I think Brahms gets short shrift.
Ludwig van Beethoven started in the Classical period but paved the way for musical Romanticism. Johannes Brahms started in the Romantic period but created works with the epic solidity of his Classical forebearers. Brahms' compositions are deep, patient, and philosophically weighty. He does more storytelling with color and harmony and dynamics (especially in his vocal compositions) than any of his predecessors and the vast majority of his successors.