Gregory Dal Piaz

Location: New York, NY

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Top Barbaresco tasted May 2013

Rank Wine Rating Price
1 Produttori del Barbaresco Barbaresco Riserva Montestefano (2008)
Comments: Wow this has a gorgeous nose, sweet and lightly fudgy, tarry and full of dark oily spice notes wrapped in a touch of animal and toastiness. In the mouth this is powerful, a touch dense but not weighty, and chewy with tannin and excellent freshness of dark cherry fruit flecked with mineral and balsamic accent notes. The balance is terrific here and this shows an added level of refinement with tons of ripe tannins on the finish which shows off very ripe strawberry and raspberry fruit. A powerhouse to be sure, this should turn out to be stunning. 94pts
Average price: $62.99 from 6 stores
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2 Cascina Delle Rose Barbaresco Tre Stelle (2010)
Comments: Classic cherries in alcohol on the nose gain complexity and a little spice edge from notes of pollen, piercing floral notes and hints f exotic sandalwood and slightly vegetal spice notes. Soft and broad on entry, this offers up bright acids and fine fruit tannins supporting fine strawberry fruit in an elegant and refined style, though there is an edge of rusticity here. Still this exhibits wonderful purity of flavor and a particularly clear expression of fruit and is flat out delicious. 93pts
Average price: $59.99 from 7 stores
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3 Barbaresco Rivella Serafino Montestefano (2008)
Comments: Earthy, leathery, and perhaps a little bretty on the deep, rich and high toned nose full of wild herbs, flowers, minerals and gorgeously framed fruit.Opening with a decidedly woodsy flavor profile this quickly shows off its seamless character showing fine structure and excellent integration in a totally old school style. This could have been made in 1978. Today it is a bit bricky already, and broad on the palate with an incipient gamy edge to the dark cherry fruit. This is a beautiful wine and a window into the past. I expect this will age very well. 93pts
Previously available for $59.99
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4 Produttori del Barbaresco Barbaresco Riserva Montefico (2008)
Comments: Tight and restrained on the nose with lots of cinnamon, a bit of bay leaf, still tight with floral top notes, a hint of jerky and menthol, and a sneaky rosebud top note. With a lovely blend of freshness and power in the mouth, this is complex and detailed, showing tension in the mouth while delivering a broad palate impression. There’s an incipient hint of fungi adding complexity to the small wild cherry, strawberry fruit that picks up some black spice on the finish but maintains fine transparency from the start through the long finish. Seamless and firm with classic tannic structure, this is quite fine. 93pts
Average price: $64.99 from 12 stores
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5 Produttori del Barbaresco Barbaresco Riserva Montestefano (2009)
Comments: Burnished wood pops on the earthy nose, which is dark yet fresh fruit, with a touch of quinine spice accenting the tight, tough and clay mineral, though sweetly floral toned nose. Big rich berry fruit greets the palate here along with nuanced spice notes that are wrapped up in a smooth, lithe palate that is rich with deep mineral notes that lead to a dark tight long finish that does show a hint of warmth. The fruit really turns quite dark cherried in the mouth, supported by nice round tannins that help to drive the briar wood and strawberry seed toned finish. This is complete and deep. A real winner. 93pts
Average price: $57.99 from 37 stores
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6 Barbaresco "Tre Stelle" Cascina Delle " Red. Wines " Natural Wines " Rose Natural Wines (2008)
Comments: Tight on the nose slowly revealing soil and dried grass aromas followed by hints of spice seeds, tar, and small red berry fruits before the intense rose petal aromas finally reveal themselves. Soft with densely packed fine grained tannins in the mouth, this feels so elegant with wonderfully pure flavors of wild cherry and raspberry fruit on the palate backed up with a terrific expression of soil. This is a touch chewy today, and shows a hint of alcohol as well, but with time both issues should resolve themselves completely leaving those lucky enough to have this wine in their cellar with a remarkably clear and precise expression of Nebbiolo. 92pts
Average price: $104.94 from 1 store
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7 Cantina del Pino Barbaresco "Ovello" (2008)
Comments: A bit woody and mineral on the nose with spicy almost white pepper and limestone notes that are followed by a hint of dusty yet sweet rose petals. This opens nicely with thrust and depth on the palate offering up sandy, intense and softly sweet raspberry preserve flavors on entry with a faint bitter orange edge upfront, followed by some stepped tea character and a touch of licorice on the backend before this fades into a fairly tight though well fruited, finish which shows lots of rose hips and amarena cherry flavors. Fairly broad in the mouth with a nice base of ripe, supple tannins. 92pts
Average price: $54.99 from 16 stores
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8 Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello (2009)
Comments: After a tight floral note opening note on the nose this turns very precise, deep and savory with a fairly strong wood smoke top notes, briar, pipe tobacco, and strawberry aromas. In the mouth this exhibits a lovely, smooth polished feel, nuanced but smooth, with fine tannins and integrated acidity supporting really precise and crisp woodsy red berry fruits. This has excellent purity this year, and good length with a balance of tannin and acid that puts this near the top of the class. 92pts
Average price: $56.99 from 40 stores
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