Piedmont

Barolo

Home to the Wine of Kings and the King of Wine, Barolo has a history dating back to the 1400’s. Until the early 1900’s the wines of the region were largely sweet reds.

Over the last 50-70 years, their vineyards have been well defined and categorised, the push to single vineyard, single variety wines completed. Like Burgundy a new generation has tried all of the new techniques and now finds comfort with making wines of purity over such as heavy handed extraction and new oak use. Their success and the money it has brought has allowed the investment of time into vineyards and practical technologies like sorting tables and temperature controlled fermenters in the wineries.

While wine lovers from around the world focus on the great Barolos made from Nebbiolo, it is Barbera, and Dolcetto that are the Italian daily drink, the cerebral Barolo saved for special occasions.

Founding Figures

The founding figures of Barolo come in several waves. The old school the shifted us from sweet reds to the ballsy dry wines of today, the Barolo Boys and the modernists who introduced more science and technology, the next generation that are finding the balance, managing climate change, pushing wines of consistency, purity, and expression of fruit over artefact.

On balance the wines are more refined and sophisticated, careful management of tannins with fruit sorting, careful destemming, handling of skins during fermentation, and, gentle pressing building more supple texture over the block busters from previous generations.

Area Planted

Barolo is a small region roughly 10km wide by 15km long. Apart from the village centers it is almost fully planted to vines.

The Communes

It was only by around 2017 that the work to define & classify Barolo’s vineyards was completed. The detailed work is only paralleled by the definition given to the vineyards of Burgundy. Like any body of work that has a financial impact disputes of who was in and who was out have been common. Defining Cru of Cannubi almost caused a war!

Barolo is made up of 11 Communes 5 of which have been the backbone of region over the last few decades. In no particular order they are La Morra, Barolo (the sub-region of the same name as the region .. I know!), Castiglione Falletto, Serralunga, and, Monforte d’Alba.

We’ve begun to explore these with the article in the Wine Bites Mag “Getting Your Head Around Barolo “The 8 Cru’s of Giovanni Sordo””. Will be exploring the Communes in more detail over time. Check in on all our articles about Barolo for the next installment!

The other 6 Communes are Verduno, home to the Monvigliero Cru, Rodi, Grinzane Cavour, Diano D’Alba, Cherasco, and, Novello.

Most Common Varieties

Beyond the traditional varieties winemakers are playing with small amounts of Riesling, Chardonnay, Viognier, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Varieties and Syrah.

White

Nascetta, native to the Commune of Novello in Barolo is making a comeback. You won’t see Nascetta listed in too many wine resources, yet, there is a dedicated group of Piemontese looking to revive this delicious white grape, think Cogno & Rivetto. Like most regions of the world we see experimentation with non-traditional varieties too.

Red

The big 3 are Barbera (31%) the most widely planted grape in the region and for good reason, Nebbiolo (10%), Dolcetto (13%). Lesser known include Freisia and Pelaverga.


Cascina Fonatana's 2016's


Cascina Fontana Barolo 2016

Undoubtedly the best Fontana Barolo Classico I’ve had!
$140
$135ea in any 3+
$130ea in any 6+
$208
$198ea in any 3+
$188ea in any 6+

Sandrone's Very Best


Luciano Sandrone Valmaggiore Nebbiolo d’Alba 2019

My two favourite Neb's from Sandrone came at the polar opposites of the price spectrum. The Valmaggiore at under under a $100 is around 1/10th the price of the 2015 Vite Talin, Sandrone's latest release super cuvée. Sandrone’s Valmaggiore is a different expression of Nebbiolo to those from the nearby Barolo and Barbaresco. Lovely perfume and density. Florals with dusty mid-palate tannins. Mineral, graphite feel to it. A nice spice. Loads of finesse and elegance. Closer to Barbaresco than Baro
$96
$91ea in any 3+
$86ea in any 6+

Luciano Sandrone Barolo ‘Vite Talin’ 2015

There are some perks to the job! Got to try the newest edition to Sandrone's list of Barolo, the Riserva 'Vite Talin'. 30 years in the making and it's quite some wine!
$930
$910ea in any 3+
$890ea in any 6+

Filters & Sorting

Showing 200 Delicious Wines!

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Boasso Dolcetto d’Alba 2019

What a lunch / bbq / pizza / everything wine!
$34
$32ea in any 3+
$30ea in any 6+
Try something new!

Benevelli Piero Langhe Nebbiolo 2018

The Perfect intro to Nebbiolo from Italy! It's got all the complexity & style of good Neb. The Neb-Heads GO MENTAL!
$35
$34ea in any 6+
$33ea in any 12+
Try something new!

Benevelli Piero Langhe Nebbiolo 2020

The Perfect intro to Nebbiolo from Italy! It's got all the complexity & style of good Neb. The Neb-Heads GO MENTAL!
$35
$34ea in any 6+
$33ea in any 12+

Boasso Barbera d’Alba 2019

This is Cracking Barbera. Complete & Delicious!
$43
$40ea in any 3+
$37ea in any 6+

Cogno Langhe Nascetta DOC del Comune di Novello ‘Anas-Cëtta’ 2019

Nascetta - Italy's answer to Gewurztraminer. Fragrant, spicy and fresh. This is a fun, youthful wine that is drinking well now but could possibly benefit from a little more time to develop, allowing the fruit and underlying structure to better harmonise. Wonderful aromas come swinging out of the glass, with pops of pity citrus, yellow stone fruits, white blossoms and a line of saline minerality. The palate marries ripe, juicy fruit with a savoury lines of lees and spicy white pepper; gentle p
$47
$43ea in any 3+
$39ea in any 6+

Vajra Dolcetto Coste & Fossati 2018

Dolcetto d’Alba DOC Coste & Fossati is a collection of ancient Dolcetto biotypes grouped by Aldo Vaira between 1979 and 1985. Cuttings were grafted in two of the estate best Barolo vineyards, Coste di Vergne and Fossati. These plants with a ‘red stalk’ create a limited production of the most intense and noble Dolcetto. Fruit for Dolcetto d’Alba DOC Coste & Fossati is picked ‘late’ by Dolcetto standards, usually in second week of September. Hanging period is extensive, than
$51
$49ea in any 3+
$47ea in any 6+
Bring Me the Truffles!

Cavallotto Dolcetto d’Alba Vigna Scot 2020

Dolcetto translates roughly to little sweet one. Many Dolcettos are raw fruit bombs, this by contrast is some seriously well made wine!
$53
$50ea in any 3+
$47ea in any 6+
Get Ahead of the Curve!

Vietti ‘Perbacco’ Langhe Nebbiolo 2019

Two of the best value Neb's on the market have to be Vietti's Castiglione Barolo and this wine Vietti's Perbacco!
$54
$51ea in any 3+
$48ea in any 6+

Oddero Langhe Nebbiolo 2018

Perfumed and dark with a with great presence on palate. Dusty chalky tannins matched with an excellent core of fruit!
$55
$53ea in any 3+
$51ea in any 6+

Vajra Langhe Nebbiolo 2019

The Perfect Way to Get an Early Read on the 2019 Vintage!
$55
$52ea in any 3+
$49ea in any 6+

Luigi Pira Langhe Nebbiolo 2018

100% Serralunga Langhe Neb ... BOOM!
$58
$55ea in any 3+
$52ea in any 6+

Oddero Langhe Nebbiolo 2019

Perfumed energetic red fruits. Dusty chalky tannins matched with an excellent core of fruit!
$59
$56ea in any 3+
$53ea in any 6+

Praeter Langhe Nebbiolo 2018

La Morra Fruit from the Vineyards of Luigi Oddero!
$61
$58ea in any 3+
$55ea in any 6+
Verduno Fruit

Fratelli Alessandria Langhe Nebbiolo ‘Prinsiòt’ 2018

Trying Langhe Neb's made with fruit from just one Commune is a great way to dial into the characteristics of that Commune
$61
$57ea in any 3+
$53ea in any 6+
Verduno Fruit

Fratelli Alessandria Langhe Nebbiolo ‘Prinsiòt’ 2019

Trying Langhe Neb's made with fruit from just one Commune is a great way to dial into the characteristics of that Commune
$61
$57ea in any 3+
$53ea in any 6+

Luigi Pira Langhe Nebbiolo 2019

Baby Barolo! Loads of Declassified Cru fruit to be devoured here!
$62
$59ea in any 3+
$56ea in any 6+