We're excited to announce the arrival of the 2016 Barbaresco from the historic Produttori del Barbaresco, which is a perfect introduction to the beauty of Nebbiolo, the Barbaresco terroir, and the character of this wonderful vintage. The 2016 growing season was another great year for Nebbiolo grapes in the region, creating contrasts with the open, fruit-driven 2015s. There are the powerful aromas and flavors of wild red fruits (think red currant, raspberry, and cherry), the rose and violet, and the spices like anise and white pepper, all to be expected in a classical Nebbiolo. But in 2016, there is a notable finesse in how those flavors come across the palate, and in how they interplay with the wine's structure; the firmness of the fine, enshrouding tannin and the racy spine of acidity make this a serious wine.
Delicious now with an hour decant, the 2016 Produttori del Barbaresco will continue to soften and evolve over 20 years if you choose to put a few in the cellar. This kind of wine is perfect with flavorful, complex and slightly rich dishes like mushroom risotto, ragu' (meat sauce) with polenta or pasta, roast lamb, and moderately aged cheeses (nothing too sharp).
The Produttori del Barbaresco is historically important in Piedmont, but it's also a rare example of a cooperative of growers making superlative wine. Before 1894, the Nebbiolo grapes grown in the village of Barbaresco in the north of Italy were sold to the neighboring village of Barolo. It was then that Domizio Cavazza, of the Royal Enological School of Alba, created the first cooperative with nine Barbaresco vineyards, and made this unique and pure expression of the grape from his native village. He recognized the singularity of the terroir here, and the tradition of Barbaresco was born.
125 years later, the wines from the Produttori del Barbaresco cooperative are recognized as being among the greatest expressions of the Nebbiolo grape on the planet. Fifty families, each with generations of knowledge and passion, work together using their collective 250 acres to make the numerous single vineyard reserve bottlings as well as the wine we're featuring, their flagship "classic" Barbaresco. The key distinction is that the "classic" Barbaresco is made from a selection of younger vines from various sites, and is crafted to reflect the growing season in a balanced and approachable fashion.
WINE ADVOCATE 95 POINTS - "The 2016 Barbaresco is a tight and beautiful wine that will require more time to unwind and soften. This beautifully balanced vintage is characterized by a tight inner core of fruit that underlines the graceful aging capacity of these wines. The 2016 is shaping up to be one destined for long cellar aging. Now in its youth, the wine offers wild berry, rose and licorice aromas."
WINE ENTHUSIAST 95 POINTS; CELLAR SELECTION - "Enticing aromas of violet, woodland berry, loose vineyard soil, wild mint and a hint of spearmint shape the intensely fragrant nose. The tense, young palate is still nervous but already boasts finesse, showing wild raspberry, crunchy red cherry, white pepper and star anise. Firm, refined tannins and racy acidity give it a linear, almost austere elegance, while bright acidity keeps it focused and balanced. Drink 2026-2036."