In the spirit of both the baby-killing threads Tex has posted lately and the recent unfortunate news about the floods in Piedmonte, I was itching for some Italian wine, and Barolo fits the bill.
I’ve opened a bottle of '04 Marcarini Barolo La Serra.
There’s a glass sitting here on my desk, a small one, and I’m just enjoying the beautiful aromas that are filling my vicinity. One thing I remember about the '04 Barolo, what made me cement my love for it, is the beautiful floral nose. I’m introducing Heidi to some tonight as well, and I’m sure she’ll enjoy it. I went baby-killer because, while I’m sure this will sing like a canary in some years, it, like the CA cabs, has some great qualities to be enjoyed NOW!
I heart the tannins, bud. I was actually just going to write something these lines.
Barolo fascinates me, really. It’s very light in color, typically, and has light edges from the get go. It isn’t substantial on the palate in terms of presence, but is very silky almost no matter what age it is. It has a very ‘pretty’ nose - floral, sweet fruits, sweet anise, very elegant - and is also elegant on the palate and even midpalate, but it gains weight there, and finishes with a blast of awesome tannic structure.
Seriously, I have had some very good aged Bdx…but for my money, my favorite old wines have been Barolo.
A 47 Borgogno Riserva last year was amazing and ethereal…plus some others from the 50’s, 60’s and early 70’s. You should check with ERic White and Thomas Rivers Brown…both have a very good connection for old Barolo…
TRB is the winemaker for Rivers Marie, Outpost, Schrader, Maybach, etc., so he is easy to find.
I think Eric posts here from time to time. He lives in Pleasanton (East Bay) and I can hook you up on Facebook or have him get in touch with you. I know he was trying to organize an old Barolo dinner but plans were falling through for everyone involved, perhaps he can reignite.
I think it’s a good idea to try Barolo at various stages of its development. It was a young 2003 Giacosa Le Rocche del Falletto that captured my attention, and I have been enchanted by Barolo ever since. Do be aware though that Barolo shuts down really hard, and once it does, do not even think about touching it for at least 8-10 years.
The first wine I ever bought was a 1974 Pia Cesare Barolo that was fabulous for twenty years. I have bought and enjoyed Barolo in the past especially 1996, but they just don’t do it for me anymore. Sort of like Otto and Pobega on Bordeaux.
I’m not telling you not to drink young wines . . . I’m just saying my experience was a wall of tannin . . . and a mound of potential. I had the '03 and it was much more subtle and approachable. Do what you like bro. You’re a big boy. Promise when I see you again we will drink some older stuff . . .
I totally agree on the ‘mound of potential’, absolutely. In fact, this is the first wine I can encounter having that screams ‘potential’ to me. I expect it from Bordeaux, but I don’t get it unless I think about it. This sort of lays out as a bunch of incredible components that are still young and fresh, and after some time they will come together and be a kick ass wine, to be sure.
A beautiful wine - the nose shows the sweet anise, violets, rose petals, and sweet red fruits that the '04’s are happily known for. Bright and fresh overall. Silky on the palate, more bright pitted fruits and strawberries, a strong and building midpalate, and a wall of tannic structure at the tail end. All the components are here for a blockbuster wine in at least 10 years - I will look forward to the rest in probably 12-15 years…