Monthly Archives: July 2013

Showdown: 2005 Vigna Rionda, Barolo

The Serralunga area in Barolo may not be my favorite because of its usually more dry, heavy tannins, austere tone and often lack of elegance, but there are a few sacred places here. One of them is certainly the vineyard Vigna Rionda. In my opinion it may probably be the best among the other unofficial “grand crus” here; Parafada, Lazzarito, Falleto (Giacosa’s monopoly) and Francia (Conterno’s monopoly producing the great Monfortino). The first one to prove the potential of this vineyard and how special it really is was the legendary Bruno Giacosa in 1989. The vineyard has got its name because of its round shape and it has perfect south-west exposition at a high altitude of 330 m above sea level providing cool nights to build the so important acidity for freshness. It is protected somewhat from hail and cloudburst by the Castelletto hills in tough years like e.g. 2002. Even though skilled producers and vintage weather is the dominant factor for making great wines, it appears that it is easier here to reach ripe grapes and perfect phenolic maturity without rest sugars and thus avoid high alcohol levels too. Soil here is among the oldest parts of Barolo and contains calcareous marl, a lot of lime stone, very much iron, some sandstone, but with unexpected streaks of clay for this area and special micro elements.

2005 is a good underrated vintage, but not a classic one and the vintage is generally drinkable relatively early. It is less heavy on tannins and a little cooler vintage that is more approachable now, but may lack concentration. So it is smart to evaluate the potential of this vineyard in a this vintage now than in a classic vintage that sometimes needs more than 15-20 years to calm down and integrate the usually massive acidity and heavy tannins.

The contenders are the Massolino brothers in one ring corner and the brothers from Pira in the other. Two well known and respected producers.

2005 Massolino Barolo “Vigna Rionda”

The Massolino brothers Roberto and Franco with the help of enologist Giovanni Angeli and at times also by Dante Scaglione (known for helping Giacosa) are very traditional, but use new technology too. Grapes are de-stemmed, yields are about 45 hl per ha and roots are 30-50 years old. Traditionally long maceration is carried out for 25-30 days in cement vats, known for providing natural breathing abilities as well as equally important temperature controlling qualifications that enable gentle and gradual fermentation. Ageing is done in neutral big french and Slavonian casks (botte). Bottles are aged for two years more (one in cask, one in bottle) compared to other barolos from this estate and in total six years before they are released to the market.

The colour is blood orange-red purple with rust orange edges.

After more than three hours of decanting, the wine finally opens itself and a very complex fragrance slowly leaves the glass. Incredibly elegant and very subtle nose of ginger,  some dry red flowers, delicate inner perfume, notes of leather, warm herbs, balsamic notes, combo of gravel and lime, distinct anise seed, some tar, earth and very fine tuned limestone minerals. A great complex, broad-spanning and delicate nose!

On the palate there is dark cherries, black pepper, preserved blackberry, some saline mushrooms, truffle, some tar, a little savoury notes, iron, limestone minerals, plenty of earthy notes and hazelnut. Tannins are chewy and fine in the end as expected from this site, but absolutely not dry or harsh. However, it is a barolo, so if you drink a mouthful, it will certainly take a grip in your cheeks at this stage. However the texture is already sand paper polished and are elegantly building the structure to the long finish here. This makes the wine already very approachable. Concentration is just ok and the wine is mouth-filling and structure is actually slimmer than expected without any weighting power. High complexity and deep aromas too. Even though the acidity is still just a little whining, you can easily foresee its quality in just a few years wrapping passion fruit and anise. Even more so, the acidity and tannins are already dancing together and all is very balanced, complex and elegant indeed.

This is a very complete wine, except for lacking concentration and grip and I can imagine the potential of an even greater vintage like 2001 or 2004 in a decade or two. Open the 2005 now but I think it is probably even better to open it 2016-2030 to let the acidity calm down just a little more. If you open it earlier make sure to air it in a decanter for at least four hours, but follow the wine. If you do, you are rewarded as it starts up by firing off christmas spices like cardamom, clove, cinnamon and pastry after about two hours and then changing again to a more subtle and versatile fragrance. Yes, this wine is absolutely great with its complexity, remarkable balance and unexpected level of approachable elegance. A fantastic work done by the Massolino brothers! Costs about €75. Open in 2017.

96p/100.

2005 Pira Barolo “Vigna Rionda” wine-searcher-link
The estate is managed by Giampaolo, Romolo and Claudio. Their part of the vineyard is very young and planted in 1994. de-stemming of the grapes and yields are about 40 hl/ha. Maceration is carried out for 12-15 days with the modern rotor fermentor technology in steel vats and aging is done in both small barriques and big barrels (botte) for 24 months.

Colour: Very dark, compact almost black ruby-red center and very tiny rust orange edges.
Nose: After about four hours of decanting, a subtle and fragrance offers wonderful lilies, roses, truffle, deep burned chalky minerals, fresh balsamic notes, fir-needle, lavender, red flowers, layers of black fruit, a little eucalyptus, graphite, some tar, earth and crushed stone. Equally great, but a more direct and bigger nose here than in the Massolino! Maybe less complex than Massolino but more seducing and charming. Pretty sure that some new oak here is applied to convey these notes.
Taste: Tannins are thicker, chewier and more solid than in the Massolino and more as expected from this site. It is just too heavy now, but they are firmly building the structure to the long finish here. However, they are not anywhere near as polished yet as in the Massolino but promising. The mid palate has deep layers of black fruit, blackberry jam, truffle, balsamic flavors and very pleasant earthy minerals, plenty of iron and tar. On the downside, the end has now an austere and bitter tone that is unpleasant and the acidity is really sharp and gnarly and needs to settle down a lot more and is certainly not dancing with the tannins here.
The wine has a very seductive and big lovely nose. It is very full-bodied, quite deep considering the young vines in their vineyard, very generous, have impressive concentration and structure, but is too heavy/powerful now, a little unbalanced and lacks elegance. Currently, it requires a more heavy meal and even in this more short-lived vintage you need to forget this wine for a while. Open 2018-2030 to let it integrate more. Costs €62.

93p/100.

Massolino wins by an elegant knockout and is superior in the Rionda. Next time I will find another contender to rival it..

2004 Roagna Barbaresco Montefico

“Roagna does not change” is the slogan of the estate. Roagna owns 0.24 ha at a quite high altitude in the Montefico vineyard just east of Barbaresco town and borders the somewhat firm, structured Ovello vineyard in the north and the “fruit-silky” Montestefano in the south. It has perfect south-east exposure, the altitude sure gives it a lot of fresh acidity and is known to share the characteristics of the diverse Ovello vineyard but adds more complexity and acidity. The soil is calcareous marl and clay. Roots are about 50 years old here. Maceration is massive and lasts up to incredible 90 days! 4-6 years in casks of which a few are, surprisingly, french and then some time in bottle. Anyway, this is a really interesting producer and one absolutely true to its terroir. 2004 is a great vintage with very easy harvest and in particular in Barbaresco the wines tends to be both very structured with some muscle (not to compare with barolos) and complex, elegant at the same time. Now I have to try the wine..

2004 Roagna Barbaresco “Montefico”

Color is ruby-red color and rust orange edges.

Nose offers resins, glue, roses, dog rose, balsamic notes and offers a fragrant delicate perfume with style.

On the palate, it is somewhat chewy, but not harsh, already quite soft increasing tannins that are not yet integrated. Acidity is a little gnarly now too, but will improve over time of course. After following the wine in about three hours of air in a decanter, a mid palate finally starts to present itself very, very gently showing volatile red current, preserved concentrated raspberry, sourish wild strawberries, some menthol, a little savoury, herbs, tarry, fennel, and with pleasant gentle, fine tuned earthy limestone minerals. Surprisingly light-weighted considering the vintage and the extreme maceration period. Unfortunately, quite reduced and very closed now. It lacks concentration and some energy too, but length is good.

Uh, I hate to write this, but this wine is now a little surprisingly volatile, unbalanced and lacks concentration and energy but at the same time it is delicate, complex and has everything else. The wine obviously needs plenty of time to integrate and is obviously very closed, but now unfortunately, when considering this great vintage and the potential of the vineyard, it is a disappointment. Therefore very hard to give it a score. I guess anyone should forget it another ten years before considering opening it. Cost about €70.

92+p/100.

Traditional Langhe nebbiolos


2008 Giacomo Conterno langhe nebbiolo “Cerretta”

This 3 ha part of the cerretta vineyard, Serralunga, was acquired by Roberto Conterno in the same year that this wine was produced and he has said that this vineyard will not be ready until 2010, when the wine will be labeled as barolo. Some vines are planted in 1994, but most are replanted by Roberto in 2008, so the vineyard is really very young. 2008 production only stayed in barrels for two years compared to the minimum normal three and is thus declassified. The character of this vineyard is very different for being in Serralunga, i.e. not as structured and powerful that is. Cost €60.

Sir Galahad:

Very disappointing really and especially for the money, but the vineyard is just a baby now. However, usually it takes decades to get vines into perfection, but we will try the 2010 barolo when it is released.

Colour is unexpectedly transparent and light scarlet-red.
Very little scent here, but after a lot of airing, I notice menthol, some complex minerality, some balsamic notes, very unexpected featherlight tannins, some animalistic tones, shale stone.
The palate offers small red berries, menthol, a little dry, iron, some minerality. It lacks precision, contains very little fruit, super-light tannins and lacks acid. Over all unbalanced and lacks energy. Very hard to see this getting much better.

88p/100

Andreas:

The nose is quite sweet but with minerals. Menthol, black current and magnesium.
More menthol and minerals, but also strawberries.
The finish is quite short and a bit bitter.
Summary: Surprising lack of complexity and depth. This wine was a disappointment but it could have some more potential in the long run.

89p/100.

2009 Mascarello langhe nebbiolo

This estate is now headed by Maria-Theresa who continues the legacy of her father Bartolo with ultra-traditional production that uses 40 day long maceration in cement vats and shuns barriques and use old-school methods and used to put “no barrique, no Berlusconi” on their labels. The wine is made primarily from younger vines in the famous “grand cru” vineyard Cannubi in Barolo. Costs about €25-30.

Sir Galahad:

I was expecting more nose here of the classic tar, roses combo and I lack concentration as well as energy. Tannins are quite polished as usual. Needs plenty of air to lose up.

The nose is somewhat restrained nose but after a lot of air some fragrance of roses, tar, new wedged grass, balsamic, subtle notes.
The mid palate has a lot of earthy and fine tuned minerals, some blueberry, red current, dark cherries, but not too much fruit here. Quite soft tannins, but a little harsch acidity now even after some air.

90p/100

Andreas:

The nose contains mostly dark fruit and some minerality. Roses, tobacco and strawberries.
Initially quite high and a bit sharp acidity and a bit of alcohol. We also find blueberries, and other dark berries.
Ok length for a langhe. Driven by acidity and tannins which are surprisingly soft but quite dry.
Summary: This is a quality wine for the price level. The problem is to find them. The acidity needs to get more integrated and it will develop the coming years.

92p/100

2005 Roagna langhe rosso

“Roagna does not change” is the slogan of this estate that release their bottles after several years of aging in big Slavonian casks and some french barrique as well. They are very traditional and somewhat like the cross-breed of a heavy metal attitude when it comes to conveying terroir and the refinement of a Wagner opera, but with overwhelming charm and with a broad palate, depth and concentration. It is this diversity and contrast between fine tuned notes and bold “in-your-face” flavors that makes it so interesting and enjoyable. This wine is from younger vines from Barolo in Rocche di Castiglione Falletto, Cascina Pira and in their best Barbaresco cru vineyard pajé. Maceration is very long in about 30-50 days depending on vintage, but for a Roagna this is short. Costs about €20.

Sir Galahad:

This wine lacks some fine tuned complexity and is not directly elegant, but very generous, has a vast interesting palate and really offers something very unique. It is a bargain for the money.

Colour: dark ruby-red colour and a little rust orange edges.
Nose: Some stable notes that disappears and then somewhat animal, meaty, massive earthy minerals, dried fruit, tar and metals.
Taste: A little fleshy, savoury with thick and chewy, but not harsh, tannins. A mid palate of blood pudding, broth, wedged grass, forest floor, pepper, herbs, layers of dry and jammy black fruit, massive earthy minerals, licorice root and loads of tar. Full-bodied and powerful, but not heavy. Quite long, some depth and with good concentration.

92p/100

Andreas:

Nose: Initially there is a strong scent of stable. After that fruit and leather takes over. Hints of grass, animal notes and quite balsamic.
Taste: Quite complex with blueberries, fruit, iron and a nicely balanced acidity.
Finish: Quite soft tannins in the end.
Summary: This is one of my favourite wines for the price level. There is a lot to discover in this wine and fortunately I have many bottles in the cellar…

93p/100.

Barbaresco at reasonable prices

After overspending on wine for a while Frederik suggested a price focused theme for the evening. Barbaresco at reasonable prices seemed to be an interesting topic, but not as easy as back in the days. Frederik brought a bottle of Pelissero Nubiola, and a bottle of Rio Sordo. Andreas contributed with a bottle of Parroco Barbaresco.

2007 Parroco Barbaresco (San Michele)

A wine from the Gallina and Gaia vineyards in Neive, Barbaresco. The now deceased Don Giuseppe Cogno founded the estate San Michele together with three others in 1973. His brother Achille Cogno and Claudio Cavallo are now running the estate. Totally ecologic vineyards and traditional methods are carried out. We could not find much information about the vinification process but our guess is that this is a Barbaresco made in the modern tradition, but we suspect some use of new barriques because of the softness and already fine tuned tannins. Costs about €28-30.

Frederik:
Nose: Floral top notes, roses, wild red berries, tar, roses, balsamic notes, wedged grass, fresh earthy minerals and leather.
Taste: fennel, boysenberry, wild strawberry, fresh minerals, medium long finish. Already quite silky, soft very approachable tannins and very fine tuned except for the acidity that is still a little harsh and needs to integrate more.
Summary: Good potential and already drinkable, quite long and with generous mid palate and typical terroir characteristics of the site.

92p/100

Andreas:
Nose: Deep and round with both fruit and earthiness. Strawberries, leather and a hint of glue. Classic Nebbiolo.
Taste: Quite acidic and a bit sharp. Balsamic, blueberries and a very discrete hint of oak.
Finish: Medium long finish with soft tannins.
Summary: The nose is very pleasant. This is a very good wine for the price level, and it is definitely drinkable already.

92p/100

2007 Rio Sordo, Barbaresco Produttori del Barbaresco
www.produttoridelbarbaresco.com

Produttori del Barbaresco is a large cooperative which was founded in 1958 and now has 56 members. They produce up to nine single-vineyard Barbarescos, depending on how good the vintage is. The Rio Sardo vineyard usually produces elegant wines with silky tannins. Costs about €38.

Frederik:
Nose: A little smoky, perfume, earthy, some spice.
taste: A little unbalanced, meaty, earthy, dense, quite approachable tannins. Very short, dry and lacks energy.

86p/100

Andreas:
Nose: Surprisingly thin and quite floral. Spices, blueberries and ripen strawberries.

Taste: Red berries and fresh acidity. Quite silky tannins.
Finish: Medium finish driven by acidity.
Summary: The bottle was opened two days in advance, still the nose seemed closed. The wine is elegant for the price level but lacks complexity and personality.

87p/100

2008 Pelissero Nubiola

The Pelissero family has been in the in the business for three generations and has since 1960s produced their own wine. Today Giorgio Pelissero is heading the business and the wines are in a modern style. The grapes in the Nubiola come from six smaller lots. The name Nubiola is the name of the Nebbiolo grape in native piemontese language. Costs about €33.

Andreas:
Nose: Vanilla and oak is dominating. Ripe fruit, leather and quite a lot of depth.
Taste: Well balanced with good acidity.
Finish: Medium long and quite acidic.

Summary: Unfortunately the oak takes over the impression completely. Apart from the oak the wine is deep and fruity and easy to enjoy.
P. 84p/100

Frederik refused to drink the wine but mumbled something about vanilla and some green banana candy in disappointment after putting his nose to the bottle.

Summary of the evening
For the second time in a row oak is, unexpectedly, (again) the theme and discussion of the evening. This time we have a good and a bad example of this. Parroco seems to be able to keep the balance, show individual terroir characteristics and only get the positive effects from the oak. This is a very pleasant wine for the price level and we would definitely recommend it.

The negative surprise of the evening was the Pelissero. A winery which we visited in 2010 and got a positive impression from the wines tasted then. Andreas has also tried the 2007 Nubiola and had a completely different impression.

Frederik did compensate for his disappointing wine by bringing a fantastic piece of entrecôte which was grilled perfectly.

Next time we are considering staying with the Nebbiolo theme, but going more traditional.

Brunello: San Polino vs Il Poggiolo

Inspired by Frederiks recent visit to Montalchino we decided to bring out a couple of Brunellos from the wine fridges. Unfortunately the selection did not end up being so successful…


2003 San Polino Brunello di Montalcino Helichrysum
San Polini is a family owned winery which uses biodynamic-organic combo in the vineyard. Massale clone of sangiovese gross is planted. Their wine is aged in Slavonian oak vats and in French oak barriques. The press wine and seeds are put in french barriques before blended back into the wine. On their web page we can read the following: “We aim to produce wines that faithfully reflect the spirit of their territory and vintage.”. Sounds great so far.
Nose: Immediate sweet oak, ink, leather, chocolate, quite fresh and layers of fruit.
Taste: Blackberry, full bodied, very soft tannins, balanced mid palate in terms of tannins and acidity, but way too “new world-style” fruity, sweet and excessive vanilla pudding from new oak that covers all the other stuff in there….
Finish: Long finish with exploding fruit and vanilla.
Summary: Quality wine in there, but the oak takes over. It feels like they did harvest with good timing considering the very warm 2003 vintage, made a good selection but then forgot the wine in the barriques. So the comment scissored from the web-site appears a joke in this bottle, since you really have to try hard to get through all the oaky vanilla.

AL: 87p/100.
FB: 75p/100.


2004 Il Poggiolo (Cosimi) Brunello di Montalcino Riserva 
This is a small producer in Montalchino that Frederik stumbled across in a pizzeria in Montalcino and thought were good for the money priced at abut €30 and they seem to be driven by a quality perspective. The winery was founded by Roberto Cosimi in 1971 but in 1989 his son took over.

Nose: Unfortunately a little excessive oak, cherries, rowan-berries, stable, fresh grass, some leather, mushrooms and fresh herbs.  
Taste: quite deep, nice fruit, unfortunately a tendency towards alcohol, earthy, quite fresh acidity and warm character. The finish is a medium long and driven by acidity and tannins. Some balsamic vinegar and under vegetation.
Summary: This is a good wine for the money and has some depth and interesting mid palate, but it lacks complexity.

AL: 89p/100.
FB: 89p/100.

Summary of the evening

Recently oak has been a fixation for us both and since we know that incautious use of new oak kills the individuality and origins of the wines. Unfortunately San Polino is definitely an example of this.
The Il Poggiolo can definitely be recommended because of the low price.

Vertical 2005, 2008, 2009 Altare, Barolo Arborina

I have visited Silvia Altare, the daughter of Elio Altare, several times in La Morra, Barolo. I have always been impressed by their Barolo Arborina, especially from the vintages 2000 and 2004.

Arborina is a very small vineyard in La Morra with a lot of calcareous clay mixed with sand, marl and rich in manganese/magnesium carbonate. Typical soil from the Tortonian geological era which makes up for fragrant and very elegant wines in this region. It is also, unfortunately, exposed to hail and heavy rains. In 2006, hails wiped out the whole harvest, so no bottles from Arborina were made this year. Arborina is not considered among the best crus in the region, but Altare has succeeded in making great wines from here and is a good example of what a really skilled producer can do.

Elio Altare was the leader of the “modernista” movement back in the 80’s inspired by a trip to Burgundy. The modernists aimed for more approachable barolos with the use of barriques to soften the tannins but also to make an elegant, international style barolo. In order to restrain the prominent tannins in the nebbiolo grape during extraction, an extremely short 4-day maceration is still employed and the use of rotary fermentor which is a stainless steel temperature-controlled cabin originally invented by Enrico Scavino with a mechanic rotor that is configured to automatically move around the skins from the surface a few times a day. In the case of Arborina, usually 20% new and 80% 2nd passage french barriques are used to make this very burgundish barolo. Thus a fairly low level of new oak is employed.

2009 Barolo “Arborina”, Elio Altare

2009 is an average-good vintage that was warm, very patchy, short-cycled and absolutely not a classic one. In general, it may offer less concentration and be a little volatile, but if harvested at the right time it usually renders fine balance and the quality of tannins in terms of ripeness are in general better than the forecast. Many skilled producers that employed careful selection of grapes still managed to do really good wines.

Sir Galahad:

Colour has a very dark ruby middle, very young white/transparent edges.

The nose emerges with immediate, distinct sweet fruity cream cake, but then the nose changes tremendously even after three hours of airing. Anyway, there are pleasant and subtle fragrances, scents of water-on-stone, some tar, tiny asian herbs, saline mushrooms, mint, violets, solvent and oil paint in here. This somewhat continuously changing broad spanning nose is really fresh and delightful.

The palate offers intense, pure and very forward fruit. Grape-peel, shale, anise, fresh menthol and fine tuned minerals. Very fresh, balsamic and energetic acidity. Alcohol is a little high now, but this is just a very minor remark. Fine, but now a little rough tannins, but still of good quality. Texture is sandy now and structure is fine with a medium body. There is complexity here but this wine needs to integrate a few years more, but it will be really fresh and pretty.

A fresh and approachable wine that still offers good concentration and complexity considering the short-cycled vintage that is not in favour for nebbiolo. Open 2015.

93-94p/100

Andreas: 

A somewhat carefully nose with red fruit, lots of wild berries, balsamic notes and menthol. Not so much depth but very fresh.

Taste: Again generous with wild berries. The acidity adds freshness and energy. Some sweetness, candy and hints of solvent.

Finish: There are some sandy tannins but also fresh acidity.

Summary: This wine needs a few years for the acidity and tannins to get integrated 100%, but it has great potential and is already very good. Compared with the 2004 it is much fresher in the finish. You feel like drinking more immediately. This is a quality wine.

94p/100

2008 Altare Barolo Arborina

Sir Galahad:

2008 was a cool, somewhat patchy and difficult vintage with hails and a wet summer with mildew and parasite, but was saved by a stable weather with minor rains and cool nights in the beginning of September that lasted until a late harvest caused by an unusually late ripening. A vintage of timing the harvest it appears.

It is a good and classic vintage and generally appear, I think, very aromatic and with structure, but with more saline minerals than usual and now usually not approachable at all. The acidity level is very high and will most likely need significant time to integrate, so acidity and minerals has a tendency to cover everything else and certainly needs more airing than usual.

Colour is dark ruby middle, scarlet-red tone in the outer parts with transparent edge.

There is notes of sweet oak and some alcohol on the nose, glue, some tar, rosemary, vibrant earthy minerals and spices. After an hour, bunches of intense red flowers and the typical feminine, lovely style perfume emerges.

The mid palate has layers of blackberries, anise, peppers, pastry, black tea, notes of truffles, fresh herbs and a lot of earthy minerals. Instantly more meaty and fleshy than expected, very mouth-filling, generously full-bodied indeed with impressive concentration and it is long. The end currently has thick, chewy tannins (a little more than usual for this wine) that bites and the acidity is a little gnarly even after a lot of airing, but it is pleasantly balsamic and promises freshness for a long lifetime. This all very good. On the bad side here, is some unexpected excessive alcohol and a little sweetness and bitterness from new oak which disturbs the mid palate a little. The latter is a surprise, since the estate is usually very skillful with new oak. Even though it is too young now for evaluating its future destiny in terms of balance and elegance, it is clearly not in the same league as e.g. the great 2000 or 2004 vintages. Open 2018+. Costs about €70.

92-94p/100

2005 Altare Barolo Arborina

Sir Galahad:

2005 is a very good and underrated vintage, but not a classic one. It is in general less heavy on tannins, less structured from a little cooler vintage that is for early drinking that will not gain that much from further bottling. Concentration is usually good and if harvested at the right time it is usually balanced and more complex than forecasted.

Colour is very dark ruby middle, scarlet-red tone in the outer parts with transparent edge.

A little sweet oak on the nose, tar, asian herbs, cinnamon, rosemary, vibrant earthy minerals, very fresh black fruit, forest floor, very balsamic, a bunch of intense red flowers and the typical feminine, stylish inner perfumes. Super-freshness and stylish perfume are the obvious key words here!

The mid palate has layers of fruit typically boysenberries, wild strawberries and dark cherries. Other aromas follow e.g. anise, fennel, menthol, notes of truffles, fresh herbs, black tea, balsamic notes, spices, pepper, a lot of fine tuned earthy minerals and tar. Tannins are surprisingly just a little heavy still and not as polished as I would expect in this vintage and site when drinking it now. A very balanced wine that only suffers from just a little excessive alcohol and some oak notes that is a little disturbing, but more importantly it doesn’t cover the complex aromas here at all. Concentration is great, complexity is impressive and it is long.

An incredibly fresh and complex nose. Yes, I’d like less alcohol here too, but in this case I think there is so much else to discover here so I am more forgiving in this case. It is elegant and the tannins are thicker than usual, they are pleasantly chewy and it is complex, long and very balanced and very, very Burgundish. Open in 2014 just to let the tannins settle a little more and get more polished. Costs €82.

95p/100