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Robert Parker/Wine Advocate – The 2016 Dolcetto d'Alba Vigna Scot reveals a thick and darkly concentrated appearance. The bouquet is layered and rich with dark fruit, spice, pipe tobacco and pressed rose. Fruit comes from a two-hectare parcel and the wine is made with submerged cap in tanks with punch downs for three days. It is aged in large oak casks for six months.
About This Wine
Cavallotto's single vineyard Dolcetto Vigna Scot hails from 2.3 hectares of 30 year-old vines located within Castiglione Falletto's legendary Monprivato cru. These Dolcetto vines face east, meaning it is cooler and later ripening. On these great soils, the mature vines, low yields and traditional winemaking result in a layered, deep and remarkably serious Dolcetto. While the vast majority of Langhe Dolcetto is raised in stainless steel, the Cavallotto family prefer to use cement tank and massive 5,000-litre Slavonian botti. This helps to avoid Dolcetto's tendency for reduction and also to polish off its tannins. As always this is a Nebbiolo drinker's Dolcetto, if you know what we mean, and one that bats well above its station. It's a prettier, more medium-bodied version of this wine compared with the 2015, but there's still plenty of stuffing with dark cherry, tobacco, undergrowth and iodine aromas and flavours and loads of spice on the vibrant finish. A terrific example.
Wines of Piedmont
In the North-Western corner of Italy, with a backdrop of the visually stunning Alps, Piedmont is a great place to visit for wine tourism. It is also home to some of the most sought-after wines in the country.
Nebbiolo is the region’s most prestigious grape variety, a red variety not seen much in Australia. Wines made from this grape are powerful with remarkably high levels of tannins but a balancing acidity. The Piedmont region offers the grapes with a reliable autumn fog that provides a cooling effect which is particularly beneficial to the growth of Nebbiolo. This pre-harvest fog (“nebbia” in Italian) is actually where the grape’s name comes from. The fog is vital in that it prolongs the time spent on the vine and allows the grapes to achieve full ripeness.
The most famous examples of Nebbiolo come from the appellations (subregions) of Barolo and Barbaresco, known for their ability to age well, firm tannins and distinct smell of tar and roses. Barolo is a big tannic expression of Nebbiolo, while Barbaresco only about 15km away makes a more elegant style. Barolo wines are generally the more expensive of the two and are known to cellar for decades.
By volume however, Barbera is the most planted red grape in Piedmont. This grape makes a juicy, low tannin but high acidity easy-going red. Perhaps somewhat like a lighter style Shiraz.
While there are quite a few white varieties planted in the region, the most notable is Moscato d’Asti, made in a sparkling style in the Asti subregion.