Barolo is one of the oldest regions in the world, and within that region, there is no producer that has more of a historical presence than Giacomo Borgogno & Figli. The winery has been growing grapes and producing wine since 1761. This year, they are creeping up on 260 years of experience. That is almost 5 more years that the US has been a country!
They use only organic fertilizer and no herbicides. That way the wine can express the nature of the grape, terroir, and vintage it was grown in. 60% of their vineyards are Nebbiolo, a limited amount of those grapes can be called Barolo, and even fewer are grown in one of their five Barolo Cru vineyards. This wine comes from one of their most notable, the Liste Vineyard.
Liste Vineyard is the result of 13 million years of erosion of overlying terrain. This results in a specific micro climate and soil that is most known for growing grapes that contain immense complexity and longevity. The vines are anywhere from 270 meters to 330 meters above sea level.
2011 was a good vintage in Barolo. The wines are notably riper than other vintages and have a solid amount of body. The great part about this vintage is that you can find many wines that are very approachable at a young age, but the top bottlings, like this one, have many years ahead of them.
In the Liste vineyard, the grapes are harvested and sorted by hand. The grapes are spontaneously fermented with natural yeasts from the region. After fermentation the juice is racked and put in oak for 4 years. The region requires 2 years of oak aging, but the extended time used here is to add more complexity and structure. That lift in structure will allow a wine like this to age decades. This is one of Giacomo Borgogno & Figli’s smallest production wines with a very limited amount of cases produced.
Wine Spectator gave this a great write up 93 point review, “There is an essence of sweet fruit in this austere red, with underbrush, tar and tobacco notes holding the upper hand for now. Concentrated and long, presenting a savory, sanguine aftertaste. Best from 2019 through 2035. 550 cases made.”
Now with a couple years of age on the wine, it is starting to settle in. This is a Barolo you can buy now to celebrate a special occasion, or save for a future. The brighter fruit notes that were very apparent in its youth are still there, but more of the earth and savory tones that are natural in Barolo tend to come through. This is an amazing wine that is made by one of the most historic producers in the world.