Wednesday Newsletter 5-20-2020

In Today’s Newsletter:

Castello di Ama:
New Arrivals &
New Releases

DDO’s Top RoseRock Bottling
The Coveted “Zephirine”


New Arrival Special Feature:
Henri Prudhon

Staff Pick

The Crus Are Landing!
Arriving Friday, May 29th
2015 Produttori del Barbaresco Crus


Castello di Ama:

New Arrivals Here Now &

New Releases Arriving Friday

Castello di Ama has emerged as one of the truly special estates of Chianti.  Open to new ideas, always with quality in mind, Castello di Ama makes rich, textural Chiantis that rival the region’s most sought-after wines.  Just arrived, their 2017 Chianti Classico Ama is no exception. Archetypal of modern Chianti, drinking beautiful even in its youth, and sub-$30 per bottle, it deserves a spot at your dinner table this weekend.

Gran Selezione is the new level above Riserva designating longer aging and designed to let producers highlight their tip-top wines from Sangiovese.  In championing the new designation, Castello di Ama has further telegraphed their commitment to quality.  Their 2014 is a stunning example of what’s possible with Sangiovese when no corners are cut and punches way above its weight.  Full-bodied, rich and surprisingly silky, this is really special stuff. The latest release, arriving Friday, is a show stopper. It’s 2016, one of the finest vintages in the region, and has garnered rave reviews. Don’t miss the winery-cellared release of the 2007 Riserva or our magnum offerings below!

On account of their insane value, and readiness for drinking, Castello di Ama wines are must buys for anyone who loves Tuscan reds.

Arriving Friday, May 22nd from Castello di Ama:

Castello di Ama ‘San Lorenzo’, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG 2016 750ML ($59.95) $45 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“CELLAR SELECTION. A blend of 80% Sangiovese, 13% Merlot and 7% Malvasia Nera, this opens with aromas of black- and red-skinned berry, pipe tobacco, tilled earth and a whiff of new leather. Elegant and taut, the palate shows tension, verve and finesse, delivering juicy Marasca cherry, crushed raspberry, licorice and hints of French oak. It’s balanced, with polished, fine-grained tannins and bright acidity. Drink 2021–2036.”
Wine Spectator 95 points “Offers stunning aromas of black cherry, blackberry and violet, with ripe, sweet fruit on the palate, shaded by iron, earth and tobacco elements. Supple yet well-structured, this should come together soon. Shows terrific harmony and length. Best from 2022 through 2036. 6,500 cases made, 670 cases imported.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 95 points “The 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione San Lorenzo is immediately more inky and balsamic in terms of aromas. As soon as you lift the wine to your nose, you get pretty tones of blackberry, cassis, rosemary essence, licorice and a touch of medicinal herb. I love when Sangiovese produces those elegant aromas, and for that reason, this wine stands tall among the three single-vineyard expressions from Marco Pallanti and Castello di Ama. It shows fiber, richness and lasting structure with a very well-managed quality of tannins.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2016 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione Castello di Ama San Lorenzo is a blend taken from Ama’s four core estate vineyards. Black cherry, graphite, sage, mint, juniper berries and licorice give the San Lorenzo a distinctly dark, brooding profile to match its powerful feel. The big tannins need time to soften, but there is certainly plenty to look forward to. Stylistically, San Lorenzo is closest to Bellavista, with which it shares a decidedly somber feel. This is such a gorgeous wine.”

Only twelve bottles available!
Castello di Ama, Chianti Classico Riserva DOCG 2007 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Winery-Cellared Release!
No reviews for the 2007 Riserva, but the 2007 Classico received the following rave review:
Antonio Galloni 93 points
“The 2007 Chianti Classico Castello di Ama is fabulous. There is so much going on in the glass, as endless layers of perfumed dark red fruit caress the palate in stunning style. The wine’s precision, elegance and overall sense of harmony are all first class. Smoke, tar and roses add the final layers of complexity on the finish. Today the wine is mostly remarkable for its exceptional silkiness; readers will have to wait at least a few years for the aromatics and flavors to develop tertiary nuances. The Castello is a wine that sets a new standard for what is possible within the Chianti Classico appellation. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2027. Castello di Ama remains a reference-point producer in Tuscany. My visit to the property last year culminated with the stunning 1988 Apparita, still in great shape after all these years. The house style seeks a rich, bold expression of fruit that requires significant bottle aging to reach its apogee, even if the wines can be very showy when young. Make no mistake about it, these are some the most pedigreed wines being made anywhere.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $76

Only six magnums available!
Castello di Ama ‘San Lorenzo’, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG 2013 1.5L ($119.95) $99 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast Top 100 in 2018
Kerin O’Keefe-Wine Enthusiast 95 points
“Fragrant and refined, this radiant wine opens with scents of violet, red berry, baking spice and a whiff of plum. The chiseled palate delivers succulent wild cherry, white pepper, cinnamon and star anise alongside firm, refined tannins. It boasts a long licorice finish while bright acidity lends balance. It’s already delicious but hold for even more complexity. Drink 2020–2033.”
James Suckling 95 points “Tight and super silky with a gorgeous density and precision that gives great polish to the tannins. Makes them almost dusty. Lots of subtle dark berry, mineral and spice. Drink or hold.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The next best price is $135

Castello di Ama ‘Ama’, Chianti Classico DOCG 2015 1.5L ($69.95) $49 pre-arrival special
James Suckling 92 points
“So much sweet tobacco and cherry character here with hints of smoked meat. Medium body, fine tannins and a bright and fruity finish. Acid tension give this definition. Tangy. Drink now.”
Wine Spectator 90 points “The raspberry and cherry flavors are immediate in this elegant, balanced red, followed by accents of earth and spice. Not excessively long, but well-proportioned. Drink now through 2022. 900 cases imported.”

This is the only listing in the USA today for the magnum!

A seamlessly refreshing rose wine for warm spring evenings
Castello di Ama ‘Purple’ Rosato Toscana IGT, Tuscany 2017 1.5L ($69.95) $49 pre-arrival special
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 90 points
“Luminous red-pink. Fresh aromas of strawberry and flowers, then ripe and sweet with similar flavors to the aromas that show very good acid cut. This actually leaves a sweet impression on the long suave finish, but has so much acidity it seems less sweet than it is. Lovely. Winemaker Marco Pallanti has changed the winemaking so as to macerate the must on the skins for twelve hours and then ages the wine in used (one year) barriques to round it. A blend of mostly Sangiovese with a little Merlot.”

This is the only listing in the USA today for the magnum!

In Stock Now from Castello di Ama:

Castello di Ama ‘Ama’, Chianti Classico DOCG 2017 750ML ($34.95) $28 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Case-12 Castello di Ama ‘Ama’, Chianti Classico DOCG 2017 750ML ($399.95) $299 special (that’s only $24.92/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
Wine Enthusiast 95 points
“Rose, mature red berry and wild herb aromas mingle with a balsamic whiff of eucalyptus. The delicious, polished palate boasts a restrained elegance, delivering juicy Marasca cherry, crushed raspberry, star anise and white pepper alongside refined tannins. Fresh acidity keeps it balanced and lends just enough tension. Drink through 2023.”
Antonio Galloni 92 points “The 2017 Chianti Classico Ama is fabulous. Racy and voluptuous to the core the Ama captures all the richness of the vintage while retaining a great deal of aromatic freshness and energy. Succulent red cherry, plum, rose petal, mint and sweet spice build in an open-knit, inviting Chianti Classico that hits all the right notes. This is a terrific showing from Ama’s young-vine Chianti Classico bottling.”
James Suckling 92 points “Lots of primary sour cherries, blueberries and spices here. Medium-bodied with cranberry flavors and intense acidity throughout. Little edgy on the finish, but the warmth and generosity to the juicy tannins hold this together. Drink now.”
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 91 points “The 2017 Chianti Classico Ama is a terrific wine that opens to a mid-weight feel but produces an enormously expressive bouquet. The hot vintage has shaped warm tones of tilled earth and dark fruit but it is all carefully weighed and in context. The wine is open, accessible and generous. You can’t go wrong with this entry-level offering from Castello di Ama, especially with a lentil or spelt soup.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $30

Castello di Ama ‘San Lorenzo’, Chianti Classico Gran Selezione DOCG 2014 ($59.95) $39 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Monica Larner-Wine Advocate 93+ points
“The 2014 Chianti Classico Gran Selezione San Lorenzo flaunts its importance. It boasts confidence and an outward-looking personality that comes as a refreshing surprise. Like all Gran Selezione wines, it is released 30 months after January 1st following the harvest. That means it still has a few more months to go before it hits the market. This expression of Sangiovese shows depth and power with ripe fruit tones of cherry and forest berry. Like many of the other high profile wines I preview-tasted from the difficult 2014 vintage, I am delighted and surprised by the elegant and soft nature of the mature tannins. The wine’s finish offers bright freshness with layers of dark fruit, wet earth and forest floor.”
Wine Enthusiast 93 points “Aromas of exotic spice, pipe tobacco, woodland berry and a whiff of French oak take center stage on this fragrant, elegant red. The racy, ethereal palate delivers tart red cherry, tart pomegranate, cinnamon and vanilla framed in taut fine-grained tannins and vibrant acidity. Drink 2019–2026.”
James Suckling 93 points “This is extremely tangy with plenty of chocolate and lemon character and hints of cedar, too. Medium body, bright acidity and chocolatey aftertaste. Very refined and well-crafted for a 2014. Drink now.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!
The average price nationally is $48

Don’t miss all 32 Chiantis in stock now and available to browse & shop on our web store!

Now Extended Through May!


DDO’s Top RoseRock Bottling

The Coveted “Zephirine”

Arrives Friday
Domaine Drouhin Oregon is one of the landmark names in Willamette Pinot.  They were the original “French import,” long before Meo-Camuzet, Jadot or Liger-Belair thought the region was worth investing in and they’ve been an important player ever since.  While they’re best known for their bottlings off of their original vineyard in the Dundee Hills, their “RoseRock” estate in the Eola-Hills has quietly been making some of the best wines in the DDO portfolio over the last few years.

The top wine that Drouhin Oregon makes under the RoseRock label is called Zephrine and it’s a monument to everything we love about Willamette Valley Pinot, especially from the Eola-Amity Hills.  Dark fruited, with beautiful floral and spice accents, it’s a wonderful wine that’s only going to get better in your cellar.

Arriving Friday, May 22nd

Roserock Zephirine Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills 2017 750ML ($64.95) $55 pre-arrival special
Case-6 Roserock Zephirine Pinot Noir, Eola-Amity Hills 2017 750ML ($389.95) $315 pre-arrival special (that’s only $52.50/bottle and the lowest listed price in the USA today!)
James Suckling 96 points
“This has a very impressive sense of density and power with such immaculate detail and definition, in terms of tannin and fruit. The aromas are in the spicy and floral zone with blue-fruit and leafy nuances. Deceptively elegant and convincingly excellent pinot noir. Drink across the next decade.”



Tiberio Trebbiano d’Abruzzo 2018 750ML ($21.95) $18 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 91 points
“Luminous straw-green. Perfumed pomaceous orchard fruits, minerals, lemon verbena and a hint of anise on the nose. Then very pretty, nuanced flavors of lemon ice and flinty minerality showcase intense inner-mouth perfume. A wine of impeccable balance, and very persistent and fragrant on the pure finish. Extremely strong for an entry-level Trebbiano d’Abruzzo. The Tiberio family has an uncanny ability to make outstanding Trebbiano d’Abruzzo every year, no doubt thanks to their individual talents, but also because of some marvelously old vines (as much as 60-80 years of age) that can weather and adapt to just about every growing season’s climatic conditions. Such is the magic of old vines.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

Tiberio Montepulciano d’Abruzzo 2017 750ML ($24.95) $19 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata – Vinous 92 points
“Vibrant red. Captivating aromas of red currant, dark plum, blueberry, licorice and Oriental spices. Broad and ripe on entry, then luscious in the middle, finishing with a riper mouthfeel than is usual for this wine, but in keeping with the 2017 vintage (dry and hot). Finishes long, with serious, building tannins and noteworthy sweetness. This is a real miracle considering the vintage’s less-than-stellar growing season; timely rainfall at the end of September provided much-needed liquid refreshment for the Montepulciano, allowing the vines to recover from the summer drought and heat and benefit from longer hang times. On a side note, wine lovers have something else to look forward to, as the 2018 vats of Montepulciano I tried during my cellar visit were absolutely superb; they are undoubtedly the best entry-level Montepulciano wines Tiberio has ever made, so there’s something to really look forward to here.”
This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast today!

More stock arriving Friday, May 22nd!
Goodfellow Family Cellars Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley 2017 750ML ($21.95) $18 special
Case-6 Goodfellow Family Cellars Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley 2017 750ML ($129.95) $99 re-arrival special (that’s only $16.50/bottle!)
Case-12 Goodfellow Family Cellars Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley 2017 750ML ($219.95) $189 re-arrival special (that’s only $15.75/bottle!)
The 2016 of this (formerly) restaurant-only wine was such a resounding success that we bought up every case available and asked for more. Marcus graciously offered the 2017. It’s a stunning follow up for the money, showing more of the classic savoriness that his wines are known for in a more open and easy-drinking style. This is light-bodied Pinot in its prime, and quite possibly the best drink-now Pinot available for under $16/btl by the case. 

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Evesham Wood meets a prime Dundee site for one vintage and magic happens.
Evesham Wood Dundee Hills Pinot Noir 2018 750ML ($29.95) $24 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
A rare, one-off bottling from Evesham Wood. Erin Nuccio crafted this wine from [cough, cough] estate fruit. A one of a kind wine and an exceptional value.

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Bosquet’s Gigondas is super user friendly and delicious.  Pop and go!
Domaine des Bosquets Gigondas, Rhone 2016 750ML ($31.95) $26 special, 36+ bottles in stock now
Jeb Dunnuck 92 points
“Leading off the wines from bottle, the 2016 Gigondas is a classic wine from this estate, offering a deeper ruby/purple color as well as tons of garrigue, peppery spice, and earth intermixed with ample red and black fruits. Polished, rounded and sexy, with sweet tannin, it has a modern style that won’t appeal to traditionalists yet is beautifully done. The blend is 60% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre, and the rest Cinsault.”
Josh Raynolds-Vinous 92 points “Vivid ruby-red. Lively, expansive red berry, floral pastille and white pepper scents, along with suggestions of garrigue and smoky minerals. Sweet, focused and seamless in the mouth, offering juicy raspberry, spicecake and lavender flavors that deepen steadily on the back half. Clings with very good authority on the gently tannic finish and leaves succulent floral and herb notes behind.”
Joe Czerwinski-Wine Advocate 92 points “Hints of garrigue accent raspberries and Rainier cherries in the 2016 Gigondas. This blend of 60% Grenache, 25% Syrah, 10% Mourvèdre and 5% Cinsault is full-bodied and supple, with no hard edges, just lovely fruit. Long, seamless and delicious for drinking over the next 6-7 years, it’s a terrific introduction to the fruit-forward style at this estate. Tasted twice with consistent notes.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!
The average price is $39

Vinopolis Wine Shop Curbside Pick Up

Order Online / By Phone / By Email

When you’re ready to pick up, just park in our lot,
give us a call, & we’ll bring your order to your car.

(If another adult is picking up for you,
please let us know their name when placing your order.)



New Arrival Special Feature

Henri Prudhon

“The quality that this domaine consistently achieves is nothing short of remarkable… I have said this before but I would go so far as to say that Domaine Henri Prudhon is one of, and perhaps even the most under rated producer in all of Burgundy. The style is ultra-pure and completely classic. Moreover, the wines sell for very reasonable prices so if you don’t need a famous name on a label to be happy, try a bottle from Prudhon and in either color.” – Allen Meadows, Burghound

Most of the time when the phrase “cult wine” is used we think of small production, pricy wines with lots of points. But every now and then we see a wine that breaks that mold. The wines from Domain Henri Prudhon are prime examples. They aren’t expensive, but they are hard for us to source because they occupy a unique place in the Burgundy world.  For one, they’re incredibly fairly priced, which seems to be rarer than ever before in Burgundy. Most of all, though, they’re mineral driven wines, built on stone and not fruit.

The Prudhon wines seem to hold the essence of their stony terroirs inside of them. Both red and white have a minerality and precision that’s very old-school and completely captivating.  This set of 2017 whites is really something, but we’ve probably said more than we should already—and we can’t promise they’ll be available for long.  

Newly Arrived from Henri Prudhon:

Henri Prudhon & Fils Les Chenevottes, Chassagne-Montrachet Premier Cru 2017 750ML ($79.95) $69 special, 17 bottles in stock now
Burghound 91 points
“Pungent aromas are composed by notes of resin, petrol and various white orchard fruit scents. The sleek and utterly delicious medium weight flavors also possess both good body and a succulent palate impression before concluding in a lightly stony and sneaky long finish. This isn’t especially complex at present but more depth should reasonably develop if this is allowed 5-ish years or so of cellaring.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Puligny-Montrachet Les Enseignieres 2017 750ML ($99.95) $79 special, 12 bottles in stock now
Burghound 88-91 points
“Moderate wood influence surrounds the essence of pear, apple and acacia blossom-suffused nose. The sappy, citrusy and vibrant middle weight flavors that are round and quite generously proportioned, contrast somewhat with the sappy if bone dry, indeed almost strict, finish. I suspect that this will unwind and flesh out on the finish with a few years of bottle age.”

Henri Prudhon & Fils Les Castets, Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2017 750ML ($59.95) $49 special, 18 bottles in stock now
Burghound 91 points – Outstanding Top Value
“Once again there is a deft application of wood present on the citrusy green apple and acacia blossom aromas. The palate impression of the medium weight flavors is both racier and more refined while the intensely stony and saline-infused finish is clean, dry, focused and much more complex. This markedly dry but not really austere effort is really very good and worth checking out.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Henri Prudhon & Fils Sur Gamay, Saint-Aubin Premier Cru 2017 750ML ($69.95) $49 special, 15 bottles in stock now
Burghound 91 points – Outstanding Top Value
“An even cooler and more restrained nose grudgingly reveals its combination of essence of green apple, pear, grapefruit and soft spice nuances. The caressing and more concentrated medium-bodied flavors possess the same fine volume and mid-palate density as the best in the range, all wrapped in a lightly stony, bitter lemon and well-balanced finale. This is excellent and worth checking out.”

This is the lowest listed price in the USA today!

Henri Prudhon & Fils Bourgogne Blanc En Jorcul 2017 750ML ($34.95) $28 special, 22 bottles in stock now
Burghound – Outstanding Top Value
“This isn’t as spicy but it’s a bit more complex aromatically with its array of freshly sliced apple, pear, lemon zest and soft floral nuances. There is both good volume and vibrancy to the utterly delicious middle weight flavors that possess a caressing mouth feel before concluding in a slightly more complex and sneaky long finale. This is really quite good for its level and worth considering.”

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Henri Prudhon & Fils Bourgogne Aligote 2017 750ML ($27.95) $24 special, only 2 bottles available!
“A wonderfully fresh nose speaks of spice, citrus, including an interesting hint of tangerine and a whiff of petrol. The racy, plum and round flavors exude a subtle minerality on the agreeably dry, refreshing and nicely lingering finish. To enjoy young.”-Burghound

This is the lowest listed price on the West Coast!

Shop our selection of Prudhon red & white wines in stock now on our web store!


Staff Pick

When our cache of 2018 Feudo Di San Maurizio wines arrived in February, I was instantly intrigued. I knew the wines heralded from one of Europe’s most up-and-coming regions, Vallée d’Aoste, and that Feudo Di San Maurizio had developed a small, but cultish following. As such, I expected the wines to serve as a tasty excuse to learn a bit more about this majestic, yet remote corner of Italy. Having now tasted through the wines, and fallen into the wanderlust sinkhole that is Vallée d’Aoste, one thing is certain. As soon as it’s safe and responsible to travel again with a passport, you’ll know where to find me.

Since 1989 Feudo Di San Maurizio’s proprietor Michel Vallet has been producing modest quantities of wine, but wine production has always seemed to be a secondary calling. What really seems to inspire Mr. Vallet is saving obscure and forgotten grapes from extinction in the Vallée d’Aoste. Today he grows over a dozen varieties in largely untouched vineyards. The extremely low yields that result are undoubtedly part of what make his wines so dynamic.

We currently have 3 of his wines in stock, all 2018s, all delicious. The Mayolet is medium bodied, with fresh berry aromas, intriguing umami, and lively acid. It is the perfect red for the dinner table in the mold of Pinot Noir. The Cornalin (known as Humagne Rouge in Switzerland, where it is quickly becoming one of the country’s signature red grapes) also offers generous fruit, but pronounced yet silky tannins and spicy/savory complexity. If the Mayolet made me stand to attention, the Cornalin knocked me on my heels. Last but not least, the Petite Arvine (another variety exploding in popularity in nearby Switzerland) offers elevated acid, a textural mouthfeel, and a long finish. All of these factors make it the rare white wine that manages to be both refreshing and serious. In the end, I can’t recommend these wines highly enough to anybody who appreciates wines that unapologetically value freshness over power.

Feudo di San Maurizio Valle d’Aosta Mayolet, Aosta Valley 2018 750ML ($44.95) $39 special, 2 bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 95 points
“Bright red. Delicately floral and sweet spice nuances complement bright raspberry and red currant aromas and flavors, complicated by hints of white pepper, nutmeg, coriander and cumin. Juicy, dense, long and pure, with a remarkably fresh, very spicy and saline finish and notes of lavender and peony. This light-bodied wine is at once juicy, spicy and bright. Planted at 700–1,000 meters above sea level, the vintage characteristics play a huge role in what Vallet’s Mayolet wine will taste like each year; this has 12.5% alcohol, while the 2017 clocks in at 14.5% alcohol. Not surprisingly, given the variety’s extremely compact bunches (which makes Mayolet a pain to work with and hence many producers are abandoning it, a big mistake given the quality of the wines), the grapes are picked in three different tries or passes in the vineyard. Aged in stainless steel only.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Feudo di San Maurizio Cornalin Valle d’Aosta, Aosta Valley 2018 750ML ($39.95) $36 special, 20 bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 93 points
“Deep red. Rich, luscious flavors of red cherry, Oriental spices, black tea and black cherry. Tactile, sweet and long, featuring youthfully chewy but noble tannins that provide backbone. Finishes very long and smooth, with a perfumed note of lavender. 13.5% alcohol. Only stainless steel.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!

Feudo di San Maurizio Petite Arvine Valle d’Aosta, Aosta Valley 2018 ($37.95) $33 special, 19 bottles in stock now
Ian D’Agata-Vinous 90 points
“Luminous straw-green. Apple, nectarine and white peach complicated by white flowers. Clean, fresh flavors similar to the minty aromas have a tactile, delicately chewy mouthfeel (despite the absence of any skin contact here). Finishes very long, juicy and clean, with a minty nuance and a hint of residual sugar (purposely left so as to emphasize the aromatic molecules of a semi-aromatic variety). About 5,000 bottles a year.”

This is the only listing in the USA today!


The Crus Are Landing!

Arriving Friday, May 29th

2015 Produttori del Barbaresco Crus

Produttori del Barbaresco is revered for producing classically-styled Barbaresco and Riservas of uncompromising quality and transparency. It’s a miracle that these wines are still affordable and available, especially when compared to the skyrocketing prices of Barolo. You’d be hard-pressed to find such consistent quality and complexity out of such an extensive range of single-vineyard Nebbiolos anywhere else.

“The first thing that is obvious about the 2015s is that most of the wines are pretty elegant. In other words, there is huge difference between how growers deal with a warm vintage today and how they responded to similar conditions in the 1990s and 2000s, when the preference was to make huge, potent wines. Broadly speaking, the 2015s are generous Barbarescos with soft curves and a good bit of fruit intensity, but they aren’t overdone. The finest 2015s are rich, ample and quite giving, with perhaps just a touch less site-specific detail than in cooler years.” –Antonio Galloni

“The Produttori del Barbaresco has been producing stellar wines since its inception in 1958, and is clearly one of the most impressive success stories for a winegrowers’ cooperative in the history of wine. Since its very first vintage, it has been remarkable for the high quality of its wines, which rival the very best estates in Piemonte, and in its steadfast championing of the terroir of the top crus in Barbaresco… It is rather surprising, given the extremely high quality of the Produttori wines year in and year out, and their very reasonable price vis à vis the other top domaines in Barbaresco and Barolo, that they do not have a higher profile on the international wine market, and really remain (outside of Italy), one of the best-kept secrets for superb, ageworthy Piemonte wines.” –John Gilman, A View from the Cellar

2015 Produttori del Barbaresco Cru Wines Arriving Friday, May 29th:

Only eighteen bottles available!
Produttori del Barbaresco Asili, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($89.95) $65 pre-arrival special
Decanter 96 points
“Asili has a warmer microclimate than most of the other vineyards here. It was first produced by Produttori as a single-vineyard wine in 1967. The 2015 is tight, tannic and reserved, with some bright strawberry, raspberry, cranberry and vanilla creeping out of the glass. In the mouth it has some meaty savouriness, and gives a hint of the complexity to come, but as it stands this needs a lot more time to become approachable. Scored for its potential. 10,000 bottles produced. Drinking Window 2025 – 2040.”
Wine Enthusiast 95 points “Wild berry, violet, new leather, forest floor and eucalyptus aromas lift out of the glass. The elegant, full-bodied palate delivers dried black cherry, raspberry compote, licorice and dried mint alongside taut, polished tannins. Given the hot, dry growing season, this is a more powerful and concentrated version of Asili.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Asili shows a bit more aromatic lift and freshness than it did a few months ago, which is a very good sign for its future. Sweet spice and floral notes play off a core of sweet red Asili fruit. Medium in body, silky and inviting, the Asili is another highlight in this range. Like all of these wines, it shows the riper fruit and softer contours of a warm year.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Montefico, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($99.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“CELLAR SELECTION. Balsamic aromas of camphor and new leather mingle with scorched earth and mature black-skinned berry on this full-bodied red. Mirroring the nose, the enveloping palate delivers ripe Marasca cherry, black raspberry and licorice alongside tightly knit, fine-grained tannins before a hazelnut close. Drink 2022–2030.”
Decanter 95 points “Montefico lies immediately to the south of Ovello and just north of Montestefano. Produttori’s first single-vineyard release from this site was in 1970. In 2015, it seems to combine the tightness of Asili with the fragrant, red-fruited beauty of Muncagota. There’s some earthy complexity and black pepper spice, accompanied by gentle but purposeful acidity. 6,500 bottles produced. Drinking Window 2024 – 2038.”
Antonio Galloni 93+ points “The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Montefico is one of the most intriguing wines in this range. My impression is that the 2015 still has quite a bit to say, but this is Montefico, where the wines are slow to reveal themselves. White pepper, dried herbs, dried red cherry and mint add a super-appealing upper register. This is such a compelling Barbaresco.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Montestefano, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($99.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Produttori del Barbaresco Montestefano, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 1.5L ($149.95) $125 pre-arrival special, only 3 magnums available!
Antonio Galloni 94 points
“The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Montestefano rounds out this series of wines from Produttori del Barbaresco. Ample and resonant on the palate, the Montestefano shows all the natural breadth that is so typical of this site. On the palate, the Montestefano is rich and explosive, with tremendous depth and fabulous overall balance. Dark cherry, plum, espresso, licorice and spice build into the dark, sumptuous finish.”
Wine Enthusiast 94 points “Balsamic aromas of camphor mingle with mature dark-skinned berry, leather, licorice and vanilla on this structured red. The full-bodied palate reflects the nose, delivering raspberry compote, star anise, crushed mint and hazelnut alongside firm, fine-grained tannins. Drink after 2023.”
Decanter 94 points “This small cooperative goes from strength to strength under the dynamic management of Aldo Vacca. Montestefano is one of the top sites in the commune of Barbaresco. The nose is still reserved, but there are rich red fruits lurking. Very concentrated on the palate, this is lush and approachable, although one senses there is much in reserve, with excellent ageing potential. It’s taut and imposing, with a finish that’s tangy and persistent. Drinking Window 2021 – 2038.”
This is the lowest listed price in the USA today for the magnum!

Produttori del Barbaresco Muncagota, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 97 points
“EDITOR’S CHOICE. Rose, red berry and star anise aromas align with earthy whiffs of forest floor and new leather. The full-bodied, delicious palate doles out succulent Morello cherry, black raspberry, licorice and chopped mint set against a backbone of firm but refined tannins. It’s already gorgeous but will be even better with just a few more years of bottle age. Drink 2022–2030.”
Decanter 94 points “The southeast-facing Muncagota vineyard catches the morning sun, giving this wine a slightly lighter character. This 2015 has delicious red berry and cherry flavours and scents. The tannins are slightly more rustic, perhaps, and it’s the least full-bodied wine here, but its earthy elegance makes this a refreshing change for a Riserva. 13,000 bottles produced. Drinking Window 2022 – 2036.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “Just as it did over the summer, the 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Muncagota continues to impress. Bold and ample on the palate, with terrific fruit density, the 2015 offers a heady concoction of dark cherry, plum, licorice, smoke, spice and leather that flesh out in the glass. This is a terrific showing for the Muncagota, usually one of the less complex wines in the Produttori’s range of nine Riservas.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($89.95) $62.50 pre-arrival special
Produttori del Barbaresco Ovello, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 1.5L ($179.95) $135 pre-arrival special, only 2 magnums available!
Wine Enthusiast 97 points
“EDITOR’S CHOICE. Fragrant and full bodied, this structured red has enticing aromas evoking woodland berry, balsamic aromas of pine, rose petal and exotic spice. The enveloping palate delivers crushed raspberry, succulent Marasca cherry, licorice and nutmeg alongside firm, tightly knit tannins. Fresh acidity lends tension and balance. Best 2022–2027.”
Antonio Galloni 95 points “One of the stand outs in this range, the 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Ovello shows the energy and tension that are so typical of this site, but with a slightly riper profile than is the norm. Then again, we are talking about 2015. Although perhaps not the most classic expression of Ovello, the Produttori’s 2015 is very nicely done. Best of all, it will drink well with just a few more years in bottle. This is an especially heady, exotic Ovello Barbaresco that needs to shed some baby fat, its considerable appeal today notwithstanding.”
Decanter 95 points “Ovello is the northernmost vineyard in the Barbaresco commune – and the largest. It was one of the original five vineyards individually bottled in 1967 by Produttori. The clayey soils and exposure to the cool northern winds gives this wine a full body and structured tannins. The 2015 features a woody, vanilla-toned fragrance with some delicate cherry fruit. In the mouth it’s a latticework of well integrated tannins with lacy acidity draped over deep hedgerow fruits, followed by some subtle wood spice on the long finish. This is one to leave for a few years, but there’s so much potential here. 17,000 bottles and 1,200 magnums produced. Drinking Window 2024 – 2040.”
Only ten bottles available!
Produttori del Barbaresco Paje, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($89.95) $79 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 97 points
“Violet, new leather, perfumed berry and a whiff of face powder mingle together with camphor on this fragrant red. On the structured, polished palate, taut, refined tannins support succulent Morello cherry, mulberry and licorice. It’s already tempting, but hold for even more complexity. Drink 2022–2027.”
Antonio Galloni 94 points “The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Pajè is starting to shut down in bottle, but the signatures are still very much present, namely acidity and structure that give depth while also providing terrific balance to the generosity of the year. The Pajè was much more expressive when I tasted it a few months ago.”
Decanter 93 points “This is a small vineyard close to the village of Barbaresco, and its limestone-dominant soils usually give wines that are bright and floral – this wine meets that expectation. The nose shows intensity and purity, with piercing red fruit aromas. It’s supple on the attack, bright but weighty, and very concentrated. Lively acidity gives the finish tension and persistence. Elegant and long. Drinking Window 2020 – 2036.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Pora, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($79.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 95 points
“Underbrush, wild herb and dark-skinned-berry aromas form the nose along with a whiff of camphor. On the firm, structured palate, tightly knit but noble tannins offset dried Marasca cherry, cranberry, orange zest and star anise. Tense and youthfully austere, it needs a few years to unwind. Drink 2022–2027.”
Decanter 94 points “Pora is one of Barbaresco’s largest vineyards, situated on a southwest-facing slope close to the river where the soils are relatively fertile and loose. Produttori has made a wine from Pora since 1967, and today around 16,500 bottles are produced in vintages when it’s made. This 2015 still has a pronounced woody aroma, and while it’s mouthilling it manages to retain some elegance. It’s obviously youthful: the vanilla- and spice-infused wood flavours dominate and hold your attention, the fruit unable as of yet to punch through. It does have plenty of promise, however, and you could expect the succulent and ripe fruits to hold more sway over the next decade as the wood integrates. Drinking Window 2024 – 2040.”
Antonio Galloni 93 points “The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Pora is just as radiant and seductive as it was a few months ago. Plush and sumptuous in the glass, the 2015 Pora captures all of the natural intensity of the year. Even with all of its lush fruit, the Pora has plenty of structural underpinnings beneath. Succulent dark cherry, plum, espresso, menthol and licorice notes flesh out in this forward, wonderfully inviting Riserva from the Produttori. In 2015, the Pora is a real overachiever. Best of all, it should drink well with minimal cellaring.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Rabaja, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($99.95) $65 pre-arrival special
Produttori del Barbaresco Rabaja, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 1.5L ($179.95) $135 pre-arrival special, only 2 magnums available!
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“CELLAR SELECTION. Wild berry, violet, face powder and eucalyptus aromas lift out of the glass. On the youthfully austere, structured palate, tightly knit but noble tannins wrap around black cherry, raspberry, licorice and crushed mint. Give this a few more years to fully develop. Drink 2025–2035.”
Decanter 96 points “Rabajà has a complex mix of soils and at its northern edges joins the vineyards of Asili and Muncagota. This was first bottled by Produttori as a single-vineyard wine in 1971. The 2015 is darker and richer than all here other than perhaps the Asili and Rio Sordo. It has an intense meaty, inky character framed by wood and with an overlay of vanilla. It combines power and density with elegant tannins and high acidity. 17,300 bottles and 1,300 magnums produced. Drinking Window 2022 – 2040.”
Antonio Galloni 93+ points “The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Rabajà hits the palate with a blast of dark cherry, plum, chocolate, new leather, licorice, smoke and spice. Somber and imposing, the Rabajà shows plenty of its typical breadth and body, but, not surprisingly, it is also closed and in need of time. There is good energy here, if not quite the visceral thrill of the very best years.”

Produttori del Barbaresco Rio Sordo, Barbaresco Riserva DOCG 2015 750ML ($89.95) $59 pre-arrival special
Wine Enthusiast 96 points
“Dark-skinned berry, camphor, rose and crushed stone aromas shape the nose along with a whiff of pipe tobacco. The aromas carry on to the structured, full-bodied palate along with juicy Marasca cherry and licorice. Firm, fine-grained tannins provide support. Drink 2022–2030.”
Decanter 94 points “At the southern end of the commune of Barbaresco lies Rio Sordo, known for producing powerful wines. First produced by Produttori in 1978, this is right on the mark, with a denseness and muscularity that makes it stand out in the lineup. It has an inky, meaty depth which seems to have absorbed the wood into it so that it’s not so pronounced, overlaid with plenty of complex, savoury damp earth character. This is less pure and ripe in feel that the Pora, and although the acidity still has presence, it’s softer, more gentle. This is a smooth, dense, intense wine that you will want to sink into. 10,000 bottles produced. Drinking Window 2022 – 2038.”
Antonio Galloni 92 points “The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Rio Sordo comes across as quite powerful and dense today. A few months ago it was more refined, but today I get the impression of a wine that is growing in bottle. As always, the Rio Sordo is a Barbaresco of textural suaveness and early appeal, relative to the more structured wines in this range. Spice, new leather, tobacco and cedar meld into the supple, resonant finish.”


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