A Bumpy Road Indeed
Brovia - Castiglione Falletto
As I have said before, I don't think anyone is making better wines today than Brovia, with one or two very expensive exceptions. Over the past 15 years the quality here has improved vintage to vintage, and the access the brovia family has to some of the best Crus in the region has resulted in a line-up of spectacular wines. My preference has been and remains the Rocche and Ca Mia bottlings, but it is tough to go wrong with any of these classically styled wines. Withtheir current pricing, I would say that if you wanted to buy only one producer's Barolos it would have to be brovias.
More or less three week long fermentation, the crus get fermented in wood, other wines in SS, 100 Hl aging,
Twenty to thirty percent of the crus, and Brea’s (Ca’mia) younger vines, which here means about twenty five years old as the fruit from the really young vines gets sold off, goes into the Barolo Classico, meaning more than seventy percent comes from Serralunga,
Awesome nose, full of balsamic notes with a green pine edge to the small red fruits, with an assertive camphor top note. This shows fine intensity, focus and balance on the nose Round and powerful on entry this shows slightly pruny fruit , in a good way over a base of rich cooked cherry character that is laced with minerality through the moderately long finish. Yes this is quite ripe in flavor but it does manage to retain excellent freshness and is really a gorgeous wine, 92pts
A tight nose with fine herbal, mineral and black spice notes and a touch of musty earth sits cool and compact in the glass. This is intensely fruited,full of bitter cherry fruit supported by superb ripe tannins, showing super integration, This has the slightly austere aggressive quality of Rocche, but in a particularly open style, that is nonetheless not easy to understand. The nose and long finish share emerging smoky herbal and licorice notes and a pop of wild strawberry fruit . There’s a lot going on here, with tremendous potential for the future but this is a bit hard to get a handle on today. 94pts
Lots of dark fruit on the nose which offers up a nice blend of balsamic and rose notes. This is soft and broad in the mouth, with good acidity and modest tannins supporting simple red fruit framed with a hint of camphor. This is wide open and easy to drink already with a clear fresh feel that turns a touch short on the finish. A rare miss from Brovia. 88pts
Very ripe cherry fruits in alcohol on the nose are framed by sandlewood, a hint of nutmeg, some meaty nuances and late arriving jammy strawberry notes. There’s an initial opulence to this wine, though the early arriving acids lend brightness to the plump, slightly jammy cherry fruit. This is a little spicy on the palate with a touch of minerality, and lush tannins, really beautiful in an immediately approachable style that is packed with fruit. Slightly less evolved and more tannic than the Villero, this is very typical of the vintage. 92pts
Deeply earthy on the nose which shows hints of slightly peppery spice along with meaty/umami prosciutto and hoisin aromas. Tight and reserved on entry, one can sense an innate sweetness here, wrapped as it is in soft tannins. This is lovely, very ripe but with typically dark and savory Serralunga fruit, that gains detail from late arriving sandalwood, strawberry and rosehip notes. There’s plenty of tannin here, even if they are a bit soft, This is opulent if not quite as open as the Villero and Garblet Sue, opulent in a Serralunga kind of way, silky and long. 93pts
Wow this is filled with slightly figgy, slightly smoky configure of wild cherry and plum fruit on the nose. In the mouth this is almost salty due to the profound minerality. There’s a core of tobacco framed fruit that is powerful with cool fruit, incredible depth, real complexity and brightness to the fruit, and finesse in the mouth. The tannins pop on the long finish, and this is really packed and chiseled that I would expect it to be a tannic beast soon, but today it’s just firm with so much buffering material that the massive, noble tannins, don't appear until the long finish. 94-97pts
Camphor, leather, dark earthy, and damp cigar butt nose come together on the slightly spicy nose, which is tight but does show hints of a bit of hot tile, and mineral notes that recall magnesium or aluminum all topped with a suggestion of eucalyptus. Smooth and seamless on entry, this is weighty, powerful and deep with a backend that is packed with mineral notes and precise tannins. This shows incredible depth but it does lack some of the finesse of the Rocche. AIr slowly brings out some aromatic complexity with herbal and medicinal notes growing in the glass but this will require patience. It has incredible power and should turn out to be epic. 94-96pts
Lovely aromas of spiced red fruit, a little bramble, and a little meatiness gains a nice dusting of salty minerality over sour plum fruit with some air. This is a bit sweet on entry, with a nice slightly chewy texture featuring balanced acids and tight grained tannins acids. There’s a touch of alcohol showing, along with some dark plummy fruit on the finish which picks up tar and balsamic notes. Shows an approachability already that is surprising. 90-93pts
Very pretty pale cherry fruit on the nose with a tart edge that is joined by sweet tobacco, a little sage, mint and licorice accents. This is very well integrated already, smooth and rather lush, with lovely ripe tannins. This has power and elegance in a slightly warm vintage style, well knit together. Today this is much more integrated and better balanced than Rocche with lovely rich dark fruit and a slight bitter/medical edge on the slightly minty long finish. 92-94pts
A special bottling to commemorate the 150th anniversary of Brovia. A historical blend of Rocche and Villero, one that was very popular before Crus took over, that spent 5 years in botte. Bottled exclusively in magnum.
Lovely sandalwood, red licorice, and dried peach aromas greet the nose followed by light grey/black spice tones, a touch of ash and dry white clay. This is silken on entry, with burnished cherry fruit that is a touch lean and mineral before gaining nice black cherry pit fruit framed by licorice notes on the mid-palate. This has a sweetness to the tannins, and lovely wild cherry fruit on the backend that leads to a long savory finish, showing rosehip and mint nuances, along with a bit of alcohol on the finale. This is old school to the max, their Monfortino to their Giacosa-esque regular crus. 93pts