A Treasure Trove of Italian Mixed CasesDiscovering Barolo
'Barolo is the most majestic of wines made from the Nebbiolo grape. At its best it is unsurpassed by any other Italian wine and challenged by very few.’* It is, however, as hard to get right as Pinot Noir, and some Barolos used to be beasts, matured too long in wood, with powerful tannins and searing acidity making them a challenge for all but the most hardened aficionado.
In recent years a wave of change has swept the region, and the wines are now more fruit-driven, balanced and silky, while still capable of long ageing. They can take their place among the world’s best, and it is no great leap to list the three B’s of red wine as Burgundy, Bordeaux and Barolo.
Nebbiolo has the richness, power and zing to stand up to pretty much anything, even the strong flavours of a barbecue. So why not open a bottle from the case below on a day outside?
We have chosen ready-to-go wines from some of the most famous communes: rich La Morra, structured Monforte, powerful Serralunga and silky Verduno. It is an ideal way to explore the region in a handy 12-pack.
We also have a very limited number of mixed cases of one of the region’s true greats, Roagna; these wines are of fantastic quality, accessible now but with a long life ahead of them. Luca and his father Alfredo have risen to some of the greatest heights in Barolo and Barbaresco, their name instantly recognisable to any Italian wine aficionado.
The Roagnas have held fiercely on to tradition, but have tempered the instinctive choices of their ancestors with an understanding of the science behind them. The result is refined, very reliable wines that are genuine, pure, and perfectly reflect the soils in which the vines grow.
And as a bonus, we have a mixed Chianti case from La Sala. La Sala was originally brought into our portfolio mainly for our restaurant customers, but makes such charming Tuscan wines that they have won over many of our private customers as well.
Today's case includes the Chianti Classico (one of the best we've ever encountered), full of soft red, spicy fruit; the darker and denser Chianti Classico Riserva, the Chianti Classico Gran Selezione, 100% from their top vineyard; and the powerful, rich Campo All'Albero Igt Toscana blend.
*from ‘Italy’s Noble Red Wines’ by Sheldon Wasserman, published in 1990. It is a detailed and comprehensive look at Northern Italy, and although the tasting notes are a little dated, the passion of the author makes for a rattling good read.