Private Collection: Barolo Stars!

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Burlotto 2008 Barolo Monvigliero

Very aromatic, showing cherry/red fruits, cinnamon/baking spices, truffle, stone and chalk. The fruit continues sweet on the palate, balanced by very fresh acidity, rich savory and herbal notes, and fine ripe tannin, carrying on to a very long finish. The wine is lovely and light in the mouth – kind of amazing considering the very old-school production, with whole clusters crushed by foot in open wood fermenters, and up to 60 days of fermentation and maceration, all of which still results in remarkable elegance and finesse – a powerful wine with a truly delicate presence. Burlotto Monvigliero is surely one of the great wines of Barolo. 

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Burlotto 2009 Barolo Monvigliero

A very aromatic and terroir-driven wine, with the chalk of Monvigliero showing bright and citrusy. There are fine truffle aromas too, and wild strawberry fruit; a long and vivid finish – terrific wine. Quite ripe but with cut and softer tannin – as with many 2009s not hard to drink now, and perhaps not a wine for the really long haul. Also a really fine value for the very high quality of the wine. JW

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Burlotto 2012 Barolo Acclivi

Meaning "steep", Acclivi is a blend of fruit from 3 vineyards in Verduno (Monvigliero, Neirane, and Rocche dell'Olmo). As always, in 2012 Acclivi is a big step-up from the Barolo in concentration and structure, and it's a considerably more demanding and sophisticated wine. There are complex aromatics of dark fruit, orange peel, quinine; the tannins suggest that this may need the most time to develop of Burlotto's 2012s. A really classic wine. Jamie Wolff

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Oddero 2010 Barolo

Some 2010 Barolos have been showing more weight and depth than when first bottled — the Oddero Barolo is an example. It’s very good; perhaps not today the easiest drinking wine you’ll taste, as it really needs some time in bottle to unwind. It’s showing very savory and salty-mineral, with warm ripe tannins. I think it’s got a great future. JW (Isabelle Oddero in Rocche, May 2012)

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Oddero 2010 Barolo Rocche di Castiglione

It’s nice that we’re not forced to pick favorites, but if I did have to choose a preferred Barolo vineyard it would be Rocche, which often makes me think of great Burgundy along the lines of top Chambolle Musigny or top Vosne Romanee — tremendous finesse cloaking depth and power (for me tasting the best Chambolle or Vosne mostly consists of happy memories — these days Rocche is a lot more affordable!). Oddero Rocche carries the intense chalky minerality and lift that you’d expect, along with what can only be called sheer class — our British friends might say ‘breed’, or ‘pedigree’. That said, this is a structured wine that needs some time to unwind — 10 years, just to guess. Certainly all the components to age are there in beautiful balance. A very classic and truly excellent wine.  JW

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Roagna 2013 Barolo Pira

The vineyard of Pira, lying next to Rocche in Castiglione Faletto, was aquired by the Roagna family in 1989. The 2013 is a beautiful, classic Barolo, with a broad-shouldered but focused palate carrying notes of red currant, red plum, dried cherry, rose, pungent spices, licorice, iron, and cherry pit on the finish. Medium plus, but very fine grained tannins. With great acidity keeping this bright and lifted, there is pleasure to be found in short term drinking (with a long decant) as well as great potential for aging. Oskar Kostecki

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