Barolo, Riserva, Monfortino, 2010

  Giacomo Conterno

A late, fresh style vintage similar to 2013 if just a touch warmer overall and harvested a week earlier on 20th October. An overwhelming combination of fruit, flowers and minerals. A wine of colossal strength and statuesque beauty with the most extraordinary precision and refinement. Dark and light, sweet and savoury, structured but not at all rustic. Incredibly long seamless and flowing flavours of dark and red berry, red cherry, earth, wood spice, minerals and fresh cut flowers. Spectacular. A selection that often, but not always, emanates every year from the same parcels within Cascina Francia. A final decision is made in June prior to the bottling of Barolo Cascina Francia, as to whether this selection is to be blended in or kept aside as Barolo Riserva Monfortino. The wine was aged for 6 years in large used oak “botti.” Less than 1000 cases were made

Contains Sulphites.

About Giacomo Conterno

Giacomo Conterno is a Barolo estate that commands great respect, not only amongst wine lovers worldwide, but equally with the Barolo producers themselves. This bastion of traditional Barolo, passed down from father to son over 3 generations, is now in the hands of the highly talented Roberto Conterno who has arguably taken the wines on to even greater heights since taking full control of winemaking in 2003. Though the cellars are located in Monforte, the vineyards are in Serralunga. From the Cascina Francia Roberto makes an eponymous Barolo of wide renown, in addition to a pure and fine Barbera. In particularly special years Roberto separates out the finest Nebbiolo grapes from the Cascina Francia vineyard and makes the much lauded Monfortino Riserva Barolo. The vineyard practice is as organic and respectful to nature as possible, the approach in the winery is hands off. The wines are fermented in tank gently over a long period, up to 20 days for Barbera and 35 days for Nebbiolo before ageing in large oak Botti for up to 2 years for Barbera, 4 for Barolo and 7 for the Riserva. These are high-toned, intense, and as pure as Barolo can be.

Generally a classicist, Roberto prefers the cooler vintages, though one can’t help feeling he has more of a soft spot for 2011 than other warmer years "they are a little like the 2007s but with more tannin and with fresher acidities, they are less tannic and big than the 2009, however. There is a good balance.” 2011 was, crucially, a longer season than 2009, although it was hot during September nights were cooler. This allowed perfect ripening of tannins. So whilst this has added structure to the wines, they are extremely smooth and suave.

Appellation: Barolo

Barolo is the greatest, most intense and expressive display of the Northern Italian grape variety Nebbiolo. The name is given to bottles from the Piedmont area, made exclusively from Nebbiolo, and coming from the five core towns of Barolo, La Morra, Serralunga d'Alba, Castiglione Falletto and Monforte d'Alba, along with certain other peripherary villages. The wines offer power, aromatics and longevity that is almost unmatched elsewhere in Italy, perhaps the world. Top, forward thinking producers have pushed huge changes in the winemaking culture of the area, and as a result finer, purer Barolo is being produced than ever before.

Grape Type: Nebbiolo

Arguably Italy's greatest red grape variety, responsible in North-West Italy’s Piedmont region for the great reds of Barolo, Barbaresco and Roero. At its best it produces wines of an aromatic complexity and subtlety similar to that of great Burgundy, a region from where many pioneering producers such as Elio Altare drew their inspiration. The aromas and flavours are very different in profile to Pinot Noir however, usually characterised by roses, tar and truffle. Naturally tannic and acidic, Nebbiolo wines are excellent for long term ageing.