Thanks to some last minute cycling from one of their staff, my Nebbiolo tasting went ahead after all. A whistle stop tour of the North West of Italy was good fun, although occasionally could have done with a bbq’d veal chop.
Cave de Donnas, Donnas, Aosta Valley DOC, 2016
Bags of redcurrant with a little bit of forrest floor, loads of acidity and fine tannins. It’s only £16 a bottle and for my money the best value of the night.
Produttori di Carema, Carema DOC, 2016
A bit more cherry, a bit more herbal on the nose. Richer, but more linear than the Donnas. Most other people on the tasting rated this the best value, but I found it less complex and didn’t give as much.
Torraccia del Piantavigna, Gattinara DOCG, 2007
A step change in size of wine. Much bigger, fuller and more stereotypically Nebbiolo. Lots of cherries and christmas spice and an incredible length. Surprisingly young for a 2007, but drinking very well now.
Paolo Balgera, Sassella, Valtellina Superiore DOCG 2007
On first tasting this I described it as “like the first one only with Soy Sauce”, and I stick to that. It’s got loads of redcurrant and red cherry, but then a massive tertiary kick to it. They’re not particularly well integrated (yet?) though.
Produttori di Barbaresco, Barbaresco DOCG, 2012
WAY TO YOUNG! Much finer than any of the wines but also at least five years too young. The tannins and acid haven’t met at all yet. Much mellower than any of the others, with a lot more noticeable oak influence. Cherries, cranberries and raspberry seeds, this will be a great wine, but it isn’t yet.
Ciabot Berton, Roggeri, Barolo DOCG 2010
Slightly upset by this one. I had it a couple of years ago when it first came on to the societies list and was blown away by it. Two years on and it’s started to fall apart a little. The tannins are a little more bitter and the acidity isn’t standing up to is so well. Still lovely, with dried dark fruit with leather and cedar, just not the wine it was a couple of years ago. Possibly time for a vintage change.