Wednesday 5 August 2015

A Nice Old Style Barbaresco - 1993 Barbaresco Rabajà Riserva, Sergio Barale

I have said it before, I think that 1993 is a undervalued vintage in Piemonte. Kerin O´Keefe in her Barolo and Barbaresco (2014) gives the vintage 2 stars, not the only error in this book...
I buy as often I see them. I bought two bottles of this one for 25 Euro each, talk about value!

1993 Barbaresco Rabajà Riserva, Sergio Barale
The nose is medium deep, mature and somewhat restrained with fine notes of rosehips, dried red berries, mushrooms, raspberry liquorice and forest floor. A little low keyed but it has a mature charm and fine characteristics. Some smoky scents after a while. Very good.
The taste is mature and tight with notes of lingonberries, dried red cherries, rose petals, dry tobacco and mushrooms. Long and dry. Touch of old military chocolate in the finish. Perfectly mature. Worked very well with a mincemeat steak with fried vegetables and a rosé pepper sauce.
88p   (tasted 2015/08)



  1. What other (serious) errors are you thinking of in O'Keefes book? I thought it was very good, although a tad below the book about Brunello di Montalcino.

    1. Hi Henrik, first - she can, as any author, write what she wants. I was going to write a review of the book here, but then I found this one -
      Mr Klapp pretty much sums up my attitude towards her book.
      One thing Mr Klapp doesn´t mention is her praise of Gigi Rosso - I have never tasted anything more than mediocre wines from that estate, and she almost compares them to Bruno Giacosa! Luckily have Roberto Conterno now bought Arione, so some proper wines can come out of there.

  2. I agree with Joakim here. Just a thing like omitting Vietti (or Clerico) in a book about Barolo is shall I put it? Subpar... However, Joakim, I don't know if citing Klapp does any disservice (or service!) to the book - considering his subscription to the title as the biggest a-hole troll of the internet, where everyone can become an "expert" and write anything. I think one of the comments to HIS comment sums it up best, describing his disdain for any wine writer in the world that isn't himself. Having him reviewing a book about Barolo is like asking Sarah Palin to comment on the terroir differences between Serralunga and La Morra. :-)

    However, it's a mystery that someone writing a book about a wine region doesn't prepare by doing a better background reasearch. Even a novice in journalism would start a book project like that by doing a screening on who's who in the wine region to sort out the players from the wannabes. So all in all, quite surprising. However, what I DO agree upon, is that 1993 is a seriously undervalued vintage in Piemonte. And Tuscany! Just taste Scavino's Barolo Bricc dell Fiasc of Le Pupille's Saffredi from 1993 and you'll be suprised.

    1. Well, I think you say just about anything about Mr Klapp, but at the same time you could say that he probably have drunk more Barolo than you and me combined, and that´s saying something...:-)
      And I still think that his review on this book is spot on - 7 pages of Fontanafredda? And I like their wines from the 60´s and 70´s!