Wine Talk

Snooth User: BrandenG

Any Barolo experts here...?

Posted by BrandenG, Apr 26, 2010.

Hello Snoothers.

I'm rather new to wine (less than a year of experience), and I noticed I have yet to try any italian wine. I'm looking toward trying a good Barolo (the tasting notes I've read on most Barolos seem to really appeal to me). Does anyone have any reccomendations for some producers to seek out in the $15 to $30 range that are decent? I'm not looking for the most complex Barolo seeing as how my palate isn't developed enough to even appreciate it yet. So I'm looking for a simple yet balanced Barolo that would be a good introduction to the style.




Reply by Gregory Dal Piaz, Apr 26, 2010.

Hey Brandon,

Tought to find Barolo in the price range, though not impossible. A would suggest looking at some other option to give you an idea about what the wines are all about. The two that spring to mind are Produttori del barbaresco normal Barberesco. It's called the Torre bottling since the label features the ancient tower, or torre, that is in the center of twon.


The next wine is Vietti's Perbacco. Bascially the lesser Barolo juice, that is juice from Vietti's great group of vineyard, aged for less time and bottled as Langhe Nebbiolo.


I tried several of these wines, Value Nebbiolo, late last year with interesting results in out PTP takes on nebbiolo.


If you must have Barolo, look for Guido Porro, the best value in Barolo today, or Marcarini. On the other hand if you asked me for the best value priced bottle of Barolo to try in order to get an idea bout the wine I would have to recommend Burlotto's 1995 Neirane which is available from NYC's Chambers St Wines for $43.



Reply by Girl Drink Drunk, Apr 26, 2010.

I agree with Gregory: there's virtually no decent Barolo in your price range.  That said, the '04 Stefano Farina is just slightly above your budget and pretty darn good, especially for the price.  It's deep, rich and meaty, with great acid.  Drink now or age for a few years.  I liked it enough to buy a case.

Reply by hhotdog, Apr 26, 2010.

ok...GDD,  buy the case is the way to go if you find a good wine!!!  will look for it myself.  greg's suggestions always on my radar!!  can't tell you how much i love great Barolo!! tried to give a way to long story about my first  Barolo expirience that i didn't finish and would have if i didn't have that last glass of wine that put me over the edge a bit!!!  lol!  another day here on snooth!

Reply by Peppino, Apr 27, 2010.

On the topic of Nebiolo based wines, I recently discovered Valtellina Superiore on my last trip to Italy.  Certainly not barolo or barbaresco but a pretty decent alternative, I believe in your price range, if you can locate some.

Reply by cigarman168, May 1, 2010.

Burlotto Barolo 97 have taste it : Good and can recommend to you.

Reply by Manoavino, May 4, 2010.

I would suggest seeking out wines they call "Baby Barolo" like Vietti, Langhe Nebbiolo Perbacco or La Spinetta Langhe Nebbiolo they can give you a Barolo experience at a much lower price.

Reply by JonDerry, Aug 6, 2016.

I've seen the Cavallotto label over the years appearing plenty on-line, like on my facebook feed, but I've never thought to give the wines any attention myself until recently. Having started exploring Barolo with mainly the Mascarello's and Conterno's, I've slowly been trying other (lesser known) producers, and the experience has proven to be very rewarding, while also easier on the wallet. As an aside, Foxall and I have recently had some conversations about this producer, and while on his famous visit to Barolo a couple years ago he did make a stop here, finding the wines to have some funk on the nose (that blew off), though otherwise perfectly fine, but not necessarily among the top of the realm. Another friend of mine who gets to Piedmont often really loves the wines, and I seem to think Cavallotto is getting more traction in the US in recent years. So time to see if I like the wines enough to invest before the demand really bumps up?

So here's the 2011 Cavollotto Bricco Boschis, which is a cru in Castiglione Falletto owned entirely (a little more than 5 hectares) by Cavallotto, from a Barolo village known for it's balance of power and elegance, and also home to the famous Rocche and Villero crus. The Soils and terrain are varied in this transitional zone between the finesse of Barolo (Cannubi) and La Morra and the power of Serralunga and Monforte.

Upon opening the wine, there was a mostly closed, but appealing nose of dark fruits, mostly dark cherry and cranberry. While the aromatics never really opened over the 2 hours over dinner, the palate really came alive in the 2nd hour, showing excellent concentrated dark fruit, good medium freshness, and complex spice, along with powerful, firm tannins on the finish. The wine showed nice medium plus body, structure, and balance, with the oak already well integrated. There is also an elegance and clarity to the fruit, showing the hallmarks of the Castiglione Falletto village as it mixes its power with sophistication and good freshness.

The wine, along with the Linguini Bolognese made for a great pairing as well. My dining companions shared a little bit of tri-tip and sea bass. Simple ambiance, but quality food here at Angel City Cafe, Woodland Hills. 

Reply by dmcker, Aug 6, 2016.

A good dumpster dive, JD.

No idea to decant?

Reply by JonDerry, Aug 6, 2016.

Thanks, yeah it crossed my mind...though time was limited either way. Brought the wine to a restaurant, and just figured I'd use the wine glasses as decanters. Went over well so didn't 2nd guess myself.

Reply by dmcker, Aug 6, 2016.

As I've mentioned a few times over the years, I'm not a fan of indiscriminate decanting--especially since sourcing for good vintages of good wines has often been iffy and extremely pricey in several places I've lived, so I want to get the maximum I can from each bottle and don't want to mollydooker the thing. For logistical reasons, haven't felt it right to just burn any number of bottles by not letting them show at their best. I'm talking here of young and middle-aged bottles, not necessarily older ones.

Anyway, with the ultimate in infanticide of a young Barolo I have been known to. Usually, though, it's only for one bottle per label per vintage, and then I force myself to wait (on my own stock). Run into problems when purchasing moratoriums enforced by whatever person or reality leads to large gaps in back vintage stock.  ;-(

Reply by rckr1951, Aug 7, 2016.

His account has been deactivated.  Have fun with the thread.

Reply by JonDerry, Aug 7, 2016.

Blast the gaps in back vintage stock! I've got a pretty big gap on all vintages prior to 2008.

The 2011 Fenocchio Barolo's I tried last winter needed many hours in the decanter, and/or a two day situation to open. Since I bought nearly a case, and wasn't entirely happy with the first, wanted to crack another while visiting RF and it seemed to pretty well but needed a double decant hours in advance. These 2011's may be tougher than people think.

By the way, my bottle price on all of these wines, (Cru Barolo) has been around $45-50

Reply by dmcker, Aug 7, 2016.

"His account has been deactivated.  Have fun with the thread."

Don't think JD was expecting and even looking for a response from the OP--at all. Rather wanted a cheaper Barolo backgrounder, with the added bonus of a ping to GDP potentially stimulating him to revisit us, is my guess.

Reply by rckr1951, Aug 7, 2016.

Doesn't matter I'm enjoying reading all this.  Will follow up on some of these recommendations.  so keep on keepin' on.

Got me busy and started digging - found one.

Reply by GregT, Aug 8, 2016.

You have a long way to go if you want to top the queen of dumpster diving (who no longer posts).

Reply by dmcker, Aug 8, 2016.

Are we talking about...?  ;-)

Reply by rckr1951, Aug 12, 2016.

Greg - Didn't go routing around old threads (I learned my lesson - you guys taught me well.) - went digging for Barolo.  As Dmcker said before - I do like to find the dark horses.  That's what I found.

What I'm going to do is order a couple more mainstream Barolo's and the one I found and see how it fairs.

Reply by JonDerry, Aug 13, 2016.

Are you looking at any vintages in particular for drinking now Rckr? I would suggest odd numbers if they are recent, such as '05, '07, '09, '11, etc. I suppose some 12's also may not have shut down yet.

Dont worry about the dumpster diving, I feel like there's been some confusion there. Basically, it's speaking directly to old ghosts that is frowned upon, or seen as awkward. However, using those old ghosts (old threads) to talk about something relevant today is more of an art, and tends to be appreciated.

Reply by rckr1951, Aug 13, 2016.

JD - I understand what you saying and appreciate the thoughts.  I have no '05 was thinking about the '07 Icardi "Paej" in a couple of weeks, maybe a month.  Honestly my Barolo stock is thin right now - I've was drinking down my cellar a little and concentrating boosting up my US stock - especially Oregon pinots which is thread bare right now.

I am buying some Barbaresco's also. Been awhile for them also - I really like Italian wines and of the foreign wines I have Italy and France are in a close race for 1st, something like 1 bottle separating them.  I just ordered some '13 Bordeaux so that will skew things a little.

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