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Piemonte Notes


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Notes from a Piemontese theme evening.

2004 Cascina del Santuario Moscato d’Asti – when drunk fairly young, these low alcohol (5%) sparkling muscats are delightful frivolous wines, especially in summer used as aperitifs. This one was well balanced and had the requisite acidity to carry off the modest residual sugar cleanly.

1999 Monti Barbera d’Alba – I’d anticipated a whack of Barbaresco and Barolo, but we were Barbera-rich at this event. Purple to the rim, with a nice nose featuring new oak and sweet currant, this is not your typical old style Barbera. Traditional sorts would ride on seemingly forever on the high acidity rather than tannin, but this example was lower in acidity than the old style and had lavish fruit in comparison. The tannins were present but moderate and I think this one will benefit by early drinking ocver the next few years.

2000 Giullio Grasso ‘Ca’ del Baco’ Barbaresco Asili - made by, this wine showed a good varietal nose with tar and some cherry, the wine still quite tannic but showing an elegance that should bode well for the future.

1985 Bricco del Drago Vigna Le Mace (VdT) – a wine from the past – I hadn’t seen this in years although it use to be available locally. A blend of dolcetto and nebbiolo, this ages better than any dolcetto you have ever seen – nose of vanilla, cedar, roses and road tar, and still with amazing tannins, this was in great shape and food toned down the assertive acidity nicely. Nice to see this again.

1996 Marchesi di Gresy Barbaresco Gaiun Martinenga – bright colour, sweet earthy nose that later revealed some floral notes, and the wine tight as can be and tannic – a wait and see wine as it isn’t in balance right now but will hopefully ‘click in’ given more time.

1999 Gaja Sitorey – another Barbera, from a noted producer. Sweet blood nose with dark plum and a hint of bret, which blew off early, the wine fairly smooth and long, with relatively low acidity.

2000 Gaja Sito Moresco – this one is blended nebbiolo and cab/merlot, and the wine had a sweeter nose with more bret, higher acidity, and fell off more quickly on the finish narrowing at the end.

1989 Borgogno Barolo Riserva – a traditional maker founded in the late 18th century, making traditional wines. The rim on this was heading for garnet and the colour was lighter than the other. The nose, which I found a bit reticent did have some perfume but none of the earthy gaminess I associate with this wine. Decent balance, still tannic, and tight. I looked up a previous note and the fruit didn’t begin to exhibit until it had about 4 hours of air – which I didn’t have the opportunity to do on this occasion.

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