About This Wine
This wine is simply a 'declassified' Barolo. It comes from Massolino's younger Barolo vines in Serralunga. When these vines are old enough they will help produce the Barolo proper. As was the case in 2014, some fruit from the older Barolo vines also makes it into this cuvée. Like all Massolino Nebbiolo, it is aged in large Slavonian oak casks, although the Langhe only spends 18 months in wood, compared with the Barolo's 24+ months. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the style is like a scaled down Massolino Barolo, one with more immediate fragrance and finesse and less tannin. It is crafted for early enjoyment. From grapes picked in the first week of November, the 2016 is built on perfume and finesse. It's a suave, classic, forest floor and wild berry noted Nebbiolo with the savoury, chalky minerality that's so typical of Massolino and Serralunga in general.
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.
James Suckling – Aromas of cherries, cedar and strawberries with some subtle cream follow through to a medium body, firm and silky tannins and a fresh and flavorful finish. Very pretty.
Robert Parker/Wine Advocate – The 2017 Langhe Nebbiolo is a clear, direct and immediate wine. It offers those characteristic varietal tones of dried berry fruit, rose hip and licorice with a cheerful and informal approach. This bouquet is mild in terms of intensity, but all the main components are there. There is a very subtle note of sweetness or softness in the mouth that makes this wine a good choice to drink within the next two or three years. With 40,000 bottles made, this wine should be relatively easy to source.
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