Gentle ruby red colour. Aromas jump out of the glass. Rich black cherry fruit on those, a touch more aromatic oak. A whiff of cherry brandy, Orange peel, vermouth, menthol. Very complex indeed. On the palate the wine is more closed spicy and savoury than the Costa Russi with a firmer but still very fine tannic structure. The finished is well balanced and invigorating. This will need more time in bottle than the Costa Russi. A vineyard located at the top of the hill above Costa Russi at between 260 to 300 metres above sea level, with a due south exposure planted with 45 year old vines.
Angelo Gaja is Barbaresco's most revered winemaker, and our last Italian release of the calendar year. He is both Barbaresco's flag-bearer and a tireless individualist. Unquestionably a breakaway renegade, yet he is now seen as the embodiment and essence of what is meant as top-class Barbaresco. It was back in 1967 that Gaja first bottled his single Cru nebbiolo San Lorenzo, followed by Sori Tilden and Costa Russi in the '70s, instigating something of a new direction for Barbaresco’s wine making. Flying in the face of the D.O.C.G. rules did nothing to dampen the spirits of his followers, and it didn’t take long for his relentlessly expressive wines to gain international repute among wine collectors. Today his wines rank amongst the very finest the world has to offer, with global devotees and huge critical acclaim. Over the years Angelo has travelled far and wide through the wine growing regions of the world, always returning to his beloved Barbaresco a little wiser and with fresh ideas. He is the ultimate craftsman, producing Cru wines in tiny quantities that bear witness on an individual level to the exact terroirs they come from. Small barrique maturation lends an elegance that for years was seen as innovative, yet is now considered the touchstone. Vibrancy, incredible concentration and breeding characterise these wines.
Piedmont sitting at the foot of the mountains is justly regarded as one of, if not the finest wine growing region in Italy. The noblest grape found in the region in undoubtedly Nebbiolo, with the DOCG's of Barolo and Barbaresco at the forefront of production. Barbera and Dolcetto come in second and third, and being earlier ripening are often found located on those sides of the hills that receive less sunshine. The wines from Piedmont are intrinsically food friendly wines, a fact understandable given the culinary strength of the area.