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The Italian Inquirer

One of my favourite Italian reds is the Dolcetto d’Alba Vigna Bricco Mirasole, Giuseppe Mascarello. In the past it seemed to be offered summer/ early autumn each year.

The last vintage I bought from TWS was the 2017 - in July 2019. I’ve kept scanning the website for the next vintage but, so far, I have never seen it. Have I missed the 2018, or has TWS stopped stocking it?

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With the Barolo 2017 EP Offer due to be released in May 2021, I thought it prudent to do some advance homework. And I found this article from Fine & Rare that may shed some light on the quality of the vintage. For those who missed out last year for the fabled 2016’s, here may be a good vintage that you do not have to wait decades before you can get stuck in.

After the feeding frenzy that surrounded the 2016 Offer, I imagine that some members have suffered disillusionment and might not bother with the 2017’s.
That may be a BIG mistake. If you missed out on Burlotto and the like in 2016, you will probably have a good chance with the Algorithm which has an elephantine memory for the 2017’s.
The best wines should get shared around the membership, and failure to take part in this potentially very good offer, will enable others to scoop up the best.
I imagine that @Sarah will be hard at work securing allocations of the best wines for us, as I write. Very good, earlier maturing wines WILL be on offer, DO NOT MISS OUT!! :+1: :dragon:

Thanks v much for this… was thinking I’d give 17 a miss for Barolo and Brunello… but, perhaps not after all!

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well, I guess it’ll depend on the price… as Barolo goes the way of Burgundy, with yearly price increases…


I intend to exercise restraint with the ‘17s (which I certainly have not with the ‘16s). There will certainly be some good (and better than good) wines, but there will also be some that are a bit simple and some that are too hot (both stewed fruit and high alcohol levels).

I will purchase selectively, and in less quantity. Shame that there are unlikely to be any big tastings in the first half of the year at least. I already have a shortlist of what I am happy to buy “on spec” and will try not to deviate too far without good reason.

Pricing will be important, especially with a fair few back vintages currently looking good value.


Last year, I skipped the Burgundy offer to buy Barolo; this year, I’ll be doing the reverse.


My question might be, does it really have to be all or nothing?
I held back a bit on Rhone this year, to make a bit of more room for Burgundy.
And remember, there is always the Burgundy Remainder List for the rest of 2021.
I got some lovely Pataille from there late last December, which was pleasing.
Things might change, we don’t know but no harm in building flexibility into the “plan!” :+1: :dragon:

Absolutely not! Or not necessarily…

But if the budget is limited to a couple of mid-price six-packs - not for each offer, but in total for both - then any money spent on 2017 Barolo is money that could have been spent on 2019 Burgundy.

12 bottles of 2016 Barolo is, for me, more than enough to be getting on with for now anyway, so this year I’m back in Burgundy :wine_glass:


Still a lot of availability of 2016 Barolo in the market, and after having stocked up on possibly my last big Barolo vintage, I see little incentive to pay more for the 2017s when they will be offered. One of the (few) things I’ve learned sadly too recently is that it’s absolutely OK not to buy every vintage of every producer :slight_smile:


I’m in the same position (probably going for a box of each though). I also think that the Burgundy harvest was bigger in 2018 and not quite so well-regarded as 2019, so there’s no guarantee of such a large remainders list for the next 10-12 months.


You are correct!! :+1:
12 bottles of Barolo from what might well turn out to be a legendary vintage, and now another dozen from a highly regarded Burgundian year will give you a terrific addition to your cellar.
Personally, I tend to paddle in the very shallow end of the Burgundy firmament; that said the wines that I have purchased under @Toby.Morrhall guidance have given me great VFM!! :grinning: :dragon:
NOTE If the Barolo 2017 prices go much above the 2016’s, that will give me serious pause for thought! :open_mouth:

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I think pricing will be key here. Some producers will have made very good wines in 2017 - Davide Rosso claims he made better wines in 2011 than '10, and having tried them both I would personally agree - and site will play a part(there are various particular MGAs to watch out for in hot vintages).

I have no doubt some producers will simply keep cranking up the prices, but it’s interesting that a handful of 2017’s are getting higher scores than their 2016 counterparts. That is of course dependent on what confidence you have in scores or the critic who gave them.

I haven’t made my mind up yet - but there’s plenty of time between now and May to see where the land lies :smiley:


Lucky (?) for me I have not found the big reason to buy Burgundy. Until 2 years ago I could say the same for Barolo. Alas the damage was done 12 years back when my wife decided to get interested in wine and bought wine for dummies and we did a trial of Barbera. We did not at that time buy the right wine so had a limited positive experience (now seriously corrected after a cycling holiday in a Piedmont) The damage was buying her a £180 mix case of 6 Italians from TWS which she decided not to drink. 12 years late the explosion happened when we opened the 2006 Burlotto.

Now this 2017 report has convinced me to try and capture the unicorn so will enter the hunt for this if nothing else. Meanwhile I leave my precious three 2015 unicorns maturing in the cellar.

I bought a mixed EP Burgundy case in 2019 which ranged from £20 to £60. I now live in fear that when I drink these I may have a similar experience and my financing will require serious review.


Just on the point of where to spend (and indeed not spend) my money this year, does anybody know if TWS has ever carried the Produttori single-vineyard Barbarescos before. Or indeed have plans to do so in future?

They sold the 2015 mixed case last year, but I’ve not seen individual bottles before. I could very well have missed them, though.

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That answers my point perfectly thank you! Didn’t really want a full case, just a handful of bottles :smiley:

Do you know roughly when they released them?

I think(from memory) it was October/November and its a mixed box of 9 (which covers the 9 individual growths)


Yes, @willrcwyatt checked his into the Nebbiolo museum October last year. Guessing it wasn’t too long before then

The Italian Inquirer


Think it was around September but I delayed delivery. The release dates of fine wine seems pretty scattergun so I’m not sure that’s a great indicator of a future release date though.


Yes, I think many of the releases are to suit TWS release calendar, rather than any great need to shift stock as soon as it arrives. I don’t have any great problem with this approach, best to have a plan IMO.

It does make it a little tricky to plan your spending, however, and requires full attention to the website and this forum in case you miss something you really, really need.