The evaluation of the great 2010 vintage in Barolo continues and this time it was time to check out how Enzo Brezza’s barolo from Sarmassa is doing. We tasted this wine at our latest visit to the estate in Barolo in 2013. You can read about it here. Sarmassa is positioned below the famous Brunate in La Morra, Barolo.
Enzo decided not to bottle his special selection from the top part of this vineyard, the Bricco Sarmassa, this year, so all the grapes from this vineyard went into the normal Sarmassa.
Colour is quite transparent blood orange with tints of red purple and transparent edges.
After three hours of decanting, a quite deep nose emerges with distinct wallpaper adhesive, some fresh oil paint, worn leather, anise seeds, wet gravel, menthol, thyme and very fresh, ethereal qualities. Wow, after some more hours, an airily fresh scent of blossoming violets, rose petals and an aristocratic, elegant and very pretty inner perfume arrives to the scene.
On the palate at this stage it is dominated by a whiny and overly saline acidity. However, I notice distinct blood orange, cranberries, red fruit, crystalline minerals, anise, white pepper, herbs and orange-peel. Burgundy lovers would be surprised by its textural softness of its naturally ripe tannins. This is La Morra, so structure is lighter than in other areas, but here it is surprisingly light-footed and unusually weightless. The only downside with this is that it is perceived as thin, a little volatile and inconsistent now.
Please follow this wine the day after too to let the over energetic acidity to a drinkable level. Even though lacking some concentration and precision, this is still a very good Sarmassa and it is full of freshness, offers a very pretty nose and appears to be hiding away its mystic right now. My guess is to open it in 2020.
The nose has a deep and generous core of ripe red fruit and paint, but also some fresher notes of young raspberries.
Vibrant and direct acidity dominates the initial taste, but then leaves room for red fruit and some menthol. Tannins are velvety and good. The wine does not feel as young as 2010. It already has some mature notes, but still the ageing potential should be good.
In summary, the wine has a beautiful and deep nose as well as good balance, but it lacks some complexity.