Category Archives: Barolo

Glorious Italians – Barolo, Brunello and Amarone

The single most fun wine event for me so far this year, as well as the most excessive (i.e., 26 wines amongst 10 people), was a mid-week dinner featuring a host of mature Italian wines—Barolos, Brunellos and Amarones—along with some tasty white Burgundies as starters. Continue reading

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A Raft of Mature Baroli & Barbareschi from Rare Wine Co.

The old Barolos (and Barbarescos—the other great manifestation of the Nebbiolo grape from the neighboring hills) that really excite me are the traditional style Barolos (or “Baroli,” if you want to use proper Italian). Most producers made them this way up through the early 1980s: long macerations (often up to a month); submerged cap fermentations; and long aging in neutral, older Slavonian oak casks (known as botti). Continue reading

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New Direct-to-Consumer Channel for Top European Wines: VinConnect

I’m very excited at this new option for U.S. wine lovers to buy direct from some of Europe’s greatest. I also think Kevin and his team have done an admirable job in setting up a model that’s as transparent, and simply aimed at connecting producers with their U.S. fans, as possible. Continue reading

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Wine’s Hidden Beauty: The Ultimate Pleasure of Aged Wine

The greatest, most pleasurable aspect of wine tends to be hidden from most consumers. You can buy wine from the store, purchase a glass or bottle at a restaurant, or attend a tasting at most wine stores or consumer tasting events and be totally oblivious of the phenomenon that is the holy grail for fine wine lovers. That is the incredible, often jaw-droppingly complex aromas, flavors and sublime beauty of a great wine that has been aged to maturity. Continue reading

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My Top 15 Wines in 2011

So what were my top wines of the year? Out of over 6,750 wines tasted, I rated 15 at 97 points or higher. This year’s list is much more geographically spread out than last year’s, but does reveal my continuing obsession with old Barolos, which comprise five of my top 15 wines. After Barolo comes Burgundy, with three wines—two whites and one red. The remaining seven wines are one each from Bordeaux, California, Champagne, the Rhone, Sauternes, Spain and Port. Mmmm, sounds like a delicious lineup for a dinner. Continue reading

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50-year-old Wines at the 5th Floor to Celebrate a 5th Decade

We celebrated Sandy’s fifth decade at the Fifth Floor with a special menu that Executive Chef David Bazirgan came up with to pair with our wines. The food was creative and outstanding. Our wines were very good overall, and nothing was corked or faulty. As 1961 was not only a good year for people, but also an excellent year in Bordeaux, Barolo and Chateauneuf-du-Pape, it was a treat to have a bottle of that vintage from each of those appellations, all of which were in remarkably good shape. In short, it was a memorable night, and a great celebration. Continue reading

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Bipin Desai Old Barolo & Barbaresco Tasting: 1947-1978

I had mixed feelings about the organization of the day’s tasting–in terms of flights, and the lack of opening and decanting some of these older wines before they were poured–but there were some incredible wines in this tasting, many of which, eventually, showed quite well. The greatest wines in this tasting for me, that I rated 96 points or higher, were the ’64 Giacomo Conterno Barolo (WOTD), ’52 Bartolo Macarello Barolo Reserva Cannubi, ’78 Giacosa Barolo Pugnane di Castiglone Falletto, ’64 Giacosa Barbaresca Riserva Santo Stefano and the ’67 Giacomo Conterno Barolo. Continue reading

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