When speaking about the wines of Gaja, one must realize they’re speaking about a man, the growth of an entire region, and the actual juice that’s in the bottle. It’s impossible to separate the three. Angelo Gaja (pictured on the right) was an individual that forever changed the perception of Piemonte and Italian wine on the global market. Largely taking over his family estate in 1961, Angelo recognized the international disinterest in fine Italian wine and he began a journey of reinventing the vinous identity of his home village of Barbaresco and the nation as a whole.
Early on, there were a few key innovations that Gaja is largely recognized as pioneering in his region. Firstly, he dramatically lowered vineyard yields across his properties to focus on developing intense concentration at the cost of of overall volume. Neighbors considered him crazy for shaving off substantial quantity in his production until they finally tasted the wines. Secondly, he began bottling wines according to the Burgundian practice of single-vineyard crus, in order to compel the broader wine community with the expressions of place he knew to be lingering beneath the surface of the Gaja label. In the cellar Gaja also begain experimenting with temperature controlled fermentation in stainless steel, shorter maceration times, and judicious use of French barriques to increase the aromatic freshness of the wines, soften Nebbiolo’s aggressive tannins, and provide additional richness and complexity.
Feeling confident in his new approach to both vineyard management and winemaking, Gaja began to launch his wines with pricing that far exceeded the typical norms of his region. The goal here was to match the quality in the bottle with a price normally only justified for some of the top wines in the world. Initial reactions were extreme and polarizing. Some consumers exited their loyalties and others began to trulty appreciate the efforts of a man possessed. Today these wines are internationally recognized as being some of the very finest that Italy can offer on a par with the Grand Crus of Burgundy and the First-Growths of Bordeaux.
The family has expanded their holdings over the years into the broader region of Tuscany and elsewhere. French varietals have been planeted to produce wines that can compete against any style globally and showcase the tour de force that is every Gaja label.
Today the winery is on it’s fifth generation of talent with Angelo’s children Gaia Gaja, Rossana Gaja, and Giovanni Gaja leading the charge as the face of the brand and the continuation of excellence. Drinking a bottle of Gaja is a magical and luxury experience that should be both savored and frequented as often as possible. Fortunately we have a large number of Gaja bottlings available now of both perfectly aged and younger vintages. These are simply not the kind of bottles you want to pass on.
Buy any 2-5 bottles, 5% discount
Buy any 6+, 10% discount
Sale ends Tuesday 9am
Featured Wines Available Now from Gaja:
Gaja Conteisa, Barolo DOCG 2015 750ml $249 special, 6 bottles available now
Wine & Spirits 98 points “From the La Morra side of the Cerequio MGA, the 2015 is deeply resonant, its dark fruit tones layered with notes of cedar, tobacco and porcini. The Gaja family has worked extensively on canopy management since the warm 1997 and 2003 vintages, and this shows in the pleasantly tart flavors of black cherry and strawberry they achieved in the warm, dry 2015 growing season. The flavors weave together in a suave, seamless texture, expanding with air while maintaining precision and freshness. —S.J.”
Vinous 97 points “The 2015 Barolo Conteisa is a heady, exotic wine, and also one of the most complete, alluring Conteisas I have ever tasted. Conteisa is usually a wine of grace and understatement. The 2015, on the other hand, is a bold, sweeping Barolo that saturates the palate with stunning depth and volume. Even with all of its intensity, the 2015 remains vibrant. This is such a complete, harmonious wine.”
Wine Advocate 96 points “The large shoulders of this warm 2015 vintage contrast sharply with the delicate nuances of the 2016 Barbarescos also released now from Gaja. The 2015 Barolo Conteisa is intense, with a background chorus of plum, prune, herb, mint and wild cherry. It’s a very balanced Barolo. The Cerequio vineyard that provides this fruit often suffers from hail damage because the vineyard is located along the corridor of bad weather that comes over the hill from La Morra. There was some damage in mid-August, but fruit in the 2016 vintage suffered much more extensively in comparison. In fact, so little fruit was saved that Gaia Gaja is pretty sure this wine will not be produced next vintage. She tells me that they are now experimenting with anti-hail netting at this site—an eyesore they had long hoped to avoid.”
Gaja Sperss Barolo 750ml $519 special, 12 bottles available now
Pre-Arrival ETA Late-January
Kerin O’Keefe 99 points “The 2019 Sperss is drop-dead gorgeous. Expressing the captivating combination of firm structure and understated finesse that defines the best Barolos from Serralunga, it opens with aromas of underbrush, forest berry, sun-warmed hay and botanical herb. Linear and focused, the vibrant, savory palate delivers red cherry, blood orange and licorice punctuated with saline mineral notes. It has incredible energy and will age beautifully. Drink 2029-2049.”
Vinous 98 points “A wine of stature and breeding, the 2019 Barolo Sperss is pure Serralunga power. Dark toned fruit, lavender, licorice, gravel and crushed rocks soar from the glass. There is plenty of the brooding intensity and tannic heft that are such signatures, but the 2019 is also wonderfully refined.”
James Suckling 96 points “Very well integrated tannins that spread across the palate and give tension and form to the wine. Medium to full body. Chewy and juicy. Needs time to soften. Better after 2028.”
Gaja Sori San Lorenzo Langhe-Barbaresco 2017 750ml $599 special, 2 bottles available now
Wine Spectator 96 points “This tightly wound red is dense with black cherry, black currant, plum, tar and iron flavors as well as tannins. Shows a lot of power and persistence, with all the components in the right proportion, ending with a long, resonant aftertaste. Needs time. Best from 2024 through 2048. 300 cases imported. — BS”
Wine Advocate 95+ points “The 2017 growing season saw a couple of violent hail events in the Barbaresco appellation, and this celebrated vineyard suffered some damage during a storm that hit on July 19th. Yields were reduced, but the wine holds its own thanks to the careful fruit selection process put in place by the Gaja family. Their 2017 Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo is a shade richer in terms of flavor concentration, as is always the case with fruit from this slightly warmer growing site. However, like the other two single-vineyard Barbaresco expressions, this wine reveals a thin, sharp and nervous personality that is driven in large part by tannic firmness and acidity. Sorì San Lorenzo adds lots of dark mineral definition to cassis, wild cherry, rose and Provence herbs. Like the other wines, it needs extra cellar aging time.”
Decanter 95 points “This is generally the most austere of the three Gaja single-vineyard wines, and it has also been described as ‘wilder’. In this vintage the nose does seem to have more weight than Sori Tildin, with rich raspberry and cherry aromas. It’s sumptuous, full-bodied and concentrated, with considerable density and weight. Despite its youthful chewiness, it’s still polished and balanced, with a very long finish. Drinking Window 2021 – 2042.”
Gaja Pieve Santa Restituta ‘Sugarille’, Brunello 2018 750ml $259 special, 5 bottles available now
Wine Spectator 95 points “A dark, brooding 2018, with accents of smoke, vanilla, iron and tar surrounding a core of cherry and plum flavors. Reveals balsamic elements of eucalyptus and wild herbs on the lingering finish. On the austere side now, with a core of fruit and mineral. Best from 2025 through 2043.”
Gaja Pieve Santa Restituta ‘Rennina’, Brunello 2018 750ml $236 special, 5 bottles available now
Wine Spectator 94 points “Harmonious and bordering on creamy in texture, this red features cherry, raspberry, plum, loam, almond and black pepper aromas and flavors. Reveals pleasant bitterness as this winds down on the lingering aftertaste. Best from 2026 through 2045.”
Gaja Darmagi Langhe Cabernet Sauvignon 2017 750ml $249 special, 3 bottles available now
Vinous 94+ points “The 2017 Darmagi (Cabernet Sauvignon) is gorgeous. Ample, silky and voluptuous to its core, Darmagi offers tons of immediacy and sheer appeal. Today, the 2017 is all about fruit richness and texture. Readers who prefer to see a full range of Cabernet aromatics should plan on cellaring the 2017 for at least a few years. Hints of blackberry jam, mocha, licorice and spice linger, but more than anything else, the 2017 is all about flamboyance. This is an especially strong vintage.”
Jeb Dunnuck 94 points “While a base Langhe release, the 2017 Darmagi is stunning stuff, offering a killer bouquet of ripe red and black fruits, hot asphalt, spring flowers, tobacco, and a touch of rocky, earhty minerality. With a rich, medium to full-bodied mouthfeel, a more supple, upfront style, and sweet tannins, it already offers loads of pleasure, yet its solid spine of tannins and acidity make me believe it will still be drinking nicely in 15-20 years.”
Browse our full selection of Gaja wines below and shop them now on our webstore!
|GAJA FEATURE WINES
|GAJA BARBARESCO 2001
|GAJA BARBARESCO 2005
|GAJA BAROLO CONTEISA 2015
|GAJA DAGROMIS BAROLO 2019
|GAJA DARMAGI CAB SAUV 2015
|GAJA DARMAGI CAB SAUV 2017
|GAJA RESTITUTA SUGARILLE 18
|GAJA ROSSJ BASS CHARD 2019
|GAJA SANTA RESTITUTA BRUNELLO 18
|GAJA SANTA RESTITUTA RENNINA 18
|GAJA SITO MORESCO LANGHE 21
|GAJA SORI SAN LORENZO 2017 750ML
|GAJA SPERSS BAROLO 2019
Love Barbaresco wines?
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