TNs: Great Rion Ech and too-young Giacosa Asili

  • 1998 Bruno Giacosa Barbaresco Asili - Italy, Piedmont, Langhe, Barbaresco (3/16/2012)
    Too young! Decanted a while. On first being poured in my glass there’s a stunning beam of beautifully pure sweet red berry fruit. But when I taste it, while that fruit is still there, it’s dominated by fine nebbiolo tannin. After some time in the glass the nose deepens and the fruit gets darker, turning more licoricey, and the palate gets broader and fuller, coming closer to balance. Eventually a smokey tar note develops as well. Still, the fruit never quite outfights the tannin on this showing. Still tasty tonight, but in my opinion any real fireworks are still years away. (90 pts.)
  • 1999 Domaine Daniel Rion et Fils Echezeaux - France, Burgundy, Côte de Nuits, Echezeaux Grand Cru (3/15/2012)
    Popped and poured, this is open for business from the start. Lovely, pure, ripe black cherries on the nose. The palate is full and complete, with mouth-filling dark pinot fruit showing legit grand cru depth, but there’s a fair bit of acid structure and this is perfectly poised, aimed more at elegance than power. There’s just a slight hint of sandpapery tannin, but most of the structure here is from the acid. The finish is clean and pure. There is not a hint of oak to be seen anywhere. With an hour or two of air in the glass, the wine becomes more savory and meaty and complex, adding in some gravel and spicy clove notes to good effect. Really excellent. (93 pts.)

Posted from CellarTracker

Nice to hear on the Rion, so few reviews. Sitting on a mag of the same. Drink now?

It’s drinking really well now, but I’d say there’s no rush, esp. out of mag.

Interestingly I have both of these wines in the past year. Rion was corked and spilled out and I couldn’t agree more with your assessment of the Asili. I am also not sure if there will be real fireworks but Mel & I both said check back in a decade.

Agree that the '98 Asili is way too young - I had a bottle about six or so months ago, and it’s really a waste of wine at this juncture. I do think it has the components to be a very good wine in another decade, but as Glenn says, it may never be stellar.

…unlike the 98 SSR that is already stellar.