Tasting a Barolo is always a great experience because this red nectar is one of the greatest wines in Italy (and in the world). But this Barolo is something outstanding. I love talking about a Riserva, a real Cru (single vineyard) from the hill Cannubi, one of the best places for growing the grape Nebbiolo, that, in this place, shows incredible elegance and depth. In this area, the soil is made up of chalks and clay, with high percentage of limestone and sand. I have tasted this Barolo Riserva, during a lunch arranged by the producer, Damilano, at the Restaurant Imago, from Hotel Hassler (chef Francesco Apreda). Well, I want to make you sure that it has been a touching experience, both for food and wine.
The Damilano have been growing grapes in Barolo since 1890, with the great grandfather Giuseppe Borgogno. The winery is named from the following generation, thanks to Giacomo Damilano, the founder’s son-in-law. Giacomo cares of the vineyard and follows up with the winemaking, improving the process. Since 1997, the grandchildren, Guido, Mario and Paolo Damilano have taken over. The former winery is in La Morra, Cuneo (Piedmont).
The winery Damilano releases two Crus from the hill of Cannubi: Barolo Cannubi and Barolo Riserva 1752. The first wine is the classic, but it is a special and full bodied classic wine. The second wine is a selection of the best grapes from the historical vineyard Cannubi Damilano, in the highest peak of the hill: it’s a small plot of two hectares, more or less, of Nebbiolo vines from 30 to 50 years of age. The first harvest was in 2008 and since the beginning, the grapes produced here, were devoted to the Riserva.
My tasting notes: Barolo Cannubi Riserva “1752” vintage 2011. It is the fourth year of production of a bunch of 6.000 bottles per year only (of which 100 magnum) aged 7 years before release. Nebbiolo 100%. The colour is an enchanting ruby red with garnet reflections. On the nose, it is complex with a bouquet of violet, spices, blackberry and plum jam. It is well aged, showing notes of dark chocolate, leather, liquorice, cocoa and sweet tobacco, with balsamic returns. On the palate, it is complex, as well: elegant and enveloping, intense but not overwhelming. Just a Grand raid runner, it’s agile but noble and never tiring. A well-made Barolo Riserva that will show deep character even in the next years. Chapeau!
Some technical info: Aging: 6 months in a sole 50-Hl oak barrels and 24 months more in bottle
Food pairing: game, aged cheese, spiced and savoury courses, goulash.
Retail price: € 150 – $ 173 – My rating: 97/100
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