As I have mentioned in the past, I have been trying to expand my palate and wine knowledge by tasting a number of new wines. Lately I have been focused on tasting Old World wines, particularly wines from Italy. I have been a big fan of Brunello di Montalcino which is claimed to be the “King of Wines made from Sangiovese.” Its partner in the top Italian wines category is Barolo: the “King of Italian Wines.”
Naturally it made sense to me to move on to tasting the number one wine of Italy: Barolo. Tiedemann Wines stocks several Italian wines including a Barolo. I began my Barolo tasting experience with that wine. I also assembled a number of other Barolos to taste. Each of these wines comes at various price points and several are in the $50.00 plus price range.
Barolo is known as the “King of Red Wines” and also referred to as the “Noble Italian Wine.” Barolo is made from Nebbiolo (“Nebby-oh-low”) grapes. The wine is traditionally made in Northwest Italy in the Piedmont Region, in the foothills of the Alps.
The grape’s skin color is a light red similar to a Pinot Noir grape, which provides for lighter colored wine. The wine is full-bodied and dry. Generally Barolos are high in acidity and tannins with alcohol levels that are also typically a little on the high side. The aromas are floral, earthy, tar and red cherry. On the palate the wine has a depth of fruit. Usually, at least with the Barolos I have tasted, the wine is typically very tight and hard.
Barolo wines, like most wines, become mellower with age. Some Barolos require eight to 10 years of aging before they reach the mellower stage. I would recommend not only aging the Barolos but also decanting the wine for at least one hour prior to drinking it. If you don’t decant your wine then open the bottle, pour four ounces in your glass and let both the bottle and glass set for at least an hour prior to drinking.
The Barolos I Tasted:
2011 Poderi Oddero Barolo, DOCG Piedmont, Italy:
The wine was earthy on the nose and very tight. It wasn’t open to the palate. I let the wine sit in my glass for several hours and it opened a lot more and offered hints of dark fruit. The earthiness from the nose continued on the palate. The finish was of a normal length, and was chewy and tannic.
The wine had an aggregated critic score of 90 points. I purchased the wine at my local wine store, Chalet Party Shoppe, for $51.99 a bottle. This wine would pair well with red meats, heavy pastas and hard cheeses.
2011 Fratelli Seghesio La Villa, Barolo:
The wine was of light color. The aromas came across as hints of fruit cake and a light earthiness. The palate was somewhat tight with hints of red fruit and cedar. The finish had a light earthy mouth-feel and was full of dry tannins.
This wine scored 93/100 points by Wine Spectator and 91/100 points by Antonio Galloni. I purchased the wine from my local wine shop for $59.90 a bottle.
The wine would pair nicely with such lighter meats as duck, chicken, veal. It could also go well with lighter pasta dishes and risotto. I would recommend that if you haven’t tasted any Barolos lately that you do so soon. Not only is it fun picking them out, it is also a pleasure tasting them. Enjoy your next glass of Barolo.
Update on getting Out Wine Stains
My blog post on January 17, 2018, (here) spoke of wine stain removal. As I mentioned in the article, it happens to the best of us. It even happened to me several nights ago. I was reaching for the remote control and in doing so I knocked over my wine glass on the coffee table. Fortunately, I didn’t break the glass or spill the entire glass onto the rug.
After swearing two or three times I regained my composure and hurried to the kitchen for the box of table salt. I sprinkled it heavily on the wine spots and hoped it would work as I had written that it would.
I am pleased to report that it was, for the most part, effective! It worked well on the larger spots but not as well on the smaller ones. I believe those smaller spots dried out quicker. The rug will need to be cleaned but the wine spots should disappear after that.
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Until next week,
Calendar of Events
- August 1st – International Albariño Day
- August 18th – International Pinot Noir Day
- September 3rd – International Cabernet Day
- September 15th – International Grenache Day
- November 7th – International Merlot Day
- November 12th – International Tempranillo Day
- November 15th – International Zinfandel Day
- December 16th – National Wine Club Day
- December 20th – National Sangria Day
- December 31st – National Champagne Day