BAROLO & BARBARESCO

Barale Fratelli

It is exactly wines like these that will shift focus to what’s shaping up as a really serious vintage. I’ve now seen a good 70-odd Barolo and Barbaresco from 2017 – and I don’t just mean my wines, but a broad cross-section of credible producers – well enough to convince me we are looking at far more than merely a decent follow up to 2016. Frankly these wines just tend to echo the promise seen from a couple of years ago, in the Langhe and Nebbs d’Alba.  These passed inspection, as it were, with flying colours, with many wines also good enough to warrant cellaring.

Giovanni Sordo

Sordo HQ is nestled in the corner of Castiglione Falletto comune on the last stretch of the Alba-Barolo road before it takes that left fork up to Barolo village. 

Boasso Franco

These are tannic; there’s no other way to put it. If you want to show what traditionally made, flawless and totally terroir-driven Serralunga looks, smells and feels like, these are it. They do take a bit of air to crack open, but the rewards are probably exactly what you imagine of the ideal Serralunga. Graphite, smoke, maybe some darker cherry, porcini, licorice and pepper. Black tea tannins and up-acidity see the wines out. All varieties (well the reds anyway) are Serralunga first.

Marchesi Di Gresy

The wines of the Marchesi di Gresy are some of the most beautiful you will experience. The Nebbiolo of their famed Monopole Martinenga, produces wines of incredible colour, perfumes, intensity and elegance.

BRUNELLO DI MONTALCINO

Sassetti Pertimali

Always an enigmatic wine, it’s no surprise points are all over the place most years. This is a formidable wine, with layers of both complexities and ‘protection’ in the form of unusually (for Montalcino) aggressive sooty and black-tea tannins, which make it a tardy opener.