• сhristinabutorina

2019 #Piemonte | Marchesi di Barolo winery, Barolo

Updated: Jan 7, 2020

Marchesi di Barolo is a winery with 200 years long history, one of the oldest estates in Langhe, Piemonte, whose historical cellars are located right in the center of Barolo town. As I lived just about hundred meters from them, it was an obvious choice in my list of visits. Moreover, my friend from Barolo, who is an ex-sommelier recommended me this winery as they produce a really good wines. By the way, can you imagine producers of not good Barolo here? Yes, actually there are some, but it's not this particular story.

The story began in Paris in 1807, when Marquis of Barolo Carlo Tancredi Falletti married Juliette Colbert de Maulevrier, a French noblewoman, who was a quite smart lady and quickly noticed the great potential of the wines made in Barolo. Later with her death the Faletti dynasty ended up and the Opera Pia Barolo was founded in Palazzo Barolo in Turin, which operated Marchesi di Barolo #estate. Later on, Pietro Abbona and his family, who had their own wine cellars in Barolo, was also wise enough to buy the ancient cellars of the Marchesi di Barolo estate. Pietro Abbona made the wine of his region well-known throughout the world, crafting it in the large wooden casks, which he owned as the legacy of Marquise Falletti (they are still in the cellars, saw them).

Nowadays Abbona family continues to run the estate with two centuries history, producing high quality wines with modern and traditional treatment, passing a priceless knowledge of crafting the great wines for over five generations. Marchesi di Barolo estate controls about 200 hectares of #vineyards and produces wines from the main indigenous varieties of Langhe, Roero and Monferrato.

The cellars are located just underground in the historical winery in Barolo town and they are actually huge. Everything inside seems kind of exaggerated.

Wooden casks are enormously big, like my height triple times.

Cement fermentation vessels take literally whole space from floor till ceiling.

Stainless steel fermentation tanks are huge as well. Claustrophobia, hi I'm here for you.

Upstairs, in another part of the cellars on the ground floor, free space issue become easier as the things around you getting less in size, thanks god.

These are the oldest #oak casks in the cellar. Have I told this design of the barrels is my fave? Yes, I saw the same design at Oddero estate, but they were smaller, newer and more elegant though.

As it was explained, this particular barrel is 200 y.o. (seems it's one of those legacy things from Faletti times).

And it's already bleeding.

Definitely should be replaced soon. Such huge and old casks are just impossible for repairing, the only solution is to kill it.

Liked this weird #vessel, a mock-up of an old times barrel, in which Barolo wines were transported to the King, who really loved them. It seems such roll type barrels were much more convenient from logistical standpoint, as the main transport at those times were horses.

The walls and the lighting in the tasting room are those I liked a lot too.

The Barolos of the estate are classic: powerful, tannic, elegant and complex, especially the crus. And despite great ageing potential, which is of course super important for #Barolo wines in general, Marchesi's Barolos are truly approachable, so you can drink them now with pleasure and don't wait until the #bottle becomes older than you (my lovely topic).

Marchesi di Barolo produce two blends, which I was able to taste: Barolo and Barolo del commune di Barolo (yes, a bit confusing long naming), and three crus: Sarmassa, Cannubi and Coste di Rose, of which I've tasted Sarmassa one.

Barolo DOCG

Grapes: Nebbiolo 100%

Vintage: 2015

Alcohol: 14%

Vinification: alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel with maceration on skins for 8 days

Ageing: post fermentation and malolactic in cement; 2 years partially in Slavonian oak barrels and later in French oak barrels; 1 year in bottle

Nose: dried strawberry, cinnamon, tobacco, dried roses

Palate: soft tannins, full body, spicy

Classic Barolo blend of the zone, made of a very good quality. The grapes used in the blend are collected from the hills of whole Barolo area, so this wine is kind of entry level to the estate's Barolos, well representing the whole Barololand. Quite simple, understood and friendly. Good one for those, who has difficulties with #Nebbiolo perception and afraid of Barolo wine in general.

Barolo del Commune di Barolo DOCG

Grapes: Nebbiolo 100%

Vintage: 2014

Alcohol: 14,5%

Vinification: alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel with maceration on skins for 8 days

Ageing: each cru is aged separately 2 years partially in Slavonian oak barrels; then blended and aged 1 year in bottle

Nose: raspberry, earthy, liqiorice, tar

Palate: intense, well structured

This Barolo is made up of a blend of the various Barolos crafted from Nebbiolo grown in the historic vineyards of the estate, located only in the municipality of Barolo: #Cannubi, Sarmassa, Coste di Rose, Castellero, Boschetti, Preda, Vignane and Ravera. These are all super different crus, to make a stable quality of the blend is not an easy task, assembling so many diverse terriors plus different vintages requires a very talented winemaker though. This Barolo is a medium level in the line up, well balanced, having a good texture, strong but approachable #tannins, a good choice I would say.

Barolo DOCG Sarmassa

Grapes: Nebbiolo 100%

Vintage: 2014

Alcohol: 14%

Vinification: alcoholic fermentation in stainless steel with maceration on skins for 10 days

Ageing: post fermentation and malolactic in cement; 2 years partially in Slavonian oak barrels and later in French oak small barrels; 1 year in bottle blended and aged 1 year in bottle

Nose: violet, dried rose, liqiorice, spices

Palate: full body, elegant, tobacco, coffee

Loved this Sarmassa, very complex, deep, serious but in the same time elegant, intelligent and sensitive Barolo. The bouquet is endless story: dried flowers, dried red berries, spices, tar, black tea leaves, dark chocolate, cloves, grinded coffee... so on and so forth. #Sarmassa cru is located between Barolo and La Morra, in front of Cannubi vineyards. The soil is mainly composed of clay and limestone, partially with stones. These stones, combined with clay, limits vigor growth of Nebbiolo and let the vines adapt fast to climatic changes, therefore the grapes ripen and mature perfectly. My choice in Marchesi's line up so far, excellent wine.

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