Friday 6 September 2019

A Couple Of Days In Piedmont - Visits To Paolo Manzone, Sukula & Schiavenza

A couple of days in Piedmont. A stunning experience as always. First of to Serralunga and three visits (and then two more that will come in the next report).

Paolo Manzone
Paolo and his wife Luiselle runs this estate which has belonged to Luisella´s family for generations. Paolo has worked as a wine-consult before launching the wines from the estate with his name on the label in 1999. The estate produces 80.000 bottles a year from 14 hectars.
The jewel is the 5 ha Meriame cru which was planted in 1948. The Dolcetto and Barbera grapes comes from land in Sinio where they have an additional cellar. The cellar in Serralunga contains barriques, tonneaux and 1 and 3 hl Slavoniak oak casks which are used sensitively.
I met up with the charming Elisa for the tasting and Paolo joined in from time to time.

Paolo himself with Castiglione Falletto in the background
2018 Arneis Reysú
A ten year anniversary for the Arneis, being bottled for the first time in 2008. The nose is fresh and pure with notes of lemons, grass and herbs.
The taste is light and crisp with a fine acidity and notes of grass, wet stones and lemon peel.
87p   (tasted 2019/08)

2018 Dolcetto d´Alba Magna
The Dolcetto sports a juicy, earthy nose with notes of blueberries, bakelite and dry violets.
The taste is tight and good with notes of balsa wood, dried blueberries and some rosemary notes. Veru good.
86p   (tasted 2019/08)

2017 Barbera Superiore Fiorenzai
An open, fruity nose with notes of jammy strawberries, Finnish licorice and scorched earth.
The taste is juicy and fine with notes of dried up strawberry jam, fried herbs and sweet violets. Ripe and fine, holds it together nicely. 20% new tonneaux, 80% used.
87p   (tasted 2019/08)

2017 Nebbiolo d´Alba Miriné
A fine, earthy nose with notes of rosehips, dried cherries and crushed rocks. Deep with a fine backbone.
The taste is tight and balanced with a fine dry character and notes of red cherries, dried flowers and some mushrooms. Very, very good. 16 Euro at the estate, if only I had brought a car...
90p   (tasted 2019/08)

2016 Langhe Rosso Luvi
This blend consists of 80% Nebbiolo, 15% Barbera and 5% Dolcetto. The nose is medium deep with notes of mixed dark berries, fried herbs and a hint of bonfire smoke.
The taste is tight and seedy with notes of dark raspberries, salt licorice and earth. Long and fine. More expressive on the palate. 4+ years.
88p   (tasted 2019/08)

2017 Langhe Rosso Luvi
Same wine, different vintage, and although the basic characteristics are the same, the 2017 is riper, more refined and with better tannin/acidity balance. The blend is 70% Nebbiolo, 20% Barbera and 10% Dolcetto. Really fine. Yet again, 16 Euro...
91p   (tasted 2019/08)

2015 Barolo del Comune di Serralunga
This comes from the young vines in Meriame. Aged in 3 hl Slavonian casks, it displays a deep, classic Serralunga notes with damsons, chrushed rocks, sour/sweet cherries and a fine, backwards, sturdy character.
The taste is young, tight and fine with notes of dark cherries, chrushed rocks, undergrowth and dried mushrooms. Long and fine. 6+ years
91p   (tasted 2019/08)

2015 Barolo Meriame
From vines planted in 1948. It has rested in 1 hl Slavonian oaks during its upbringing. The nose is very deep and old viney with notes of dark earth, undergrowth, dried dark plums and a hint of tobacco. Rich in a low key way. Very fine.
The taste is tight and concentrated with notes of a mushrooms forest, very sweet, dried tomatoes, dried herbs and balsamic notes. Old school. 8+ years. Lovely. Who said that great Barolo is expensive? 35 Euros.
93p   (tasted 2019/08)

2013 Barolo Riserva
From my favourite vintage, this Riserva sports a deep, tight nose with notes of mushrooms, dried cherries, rosehips and old leather. Very deep and fine.
The taste is tight and expressive with notes of dried cherries, forest floor, dried dark flowers and fir wood. All Meriame, 80% from old vines and 20% from new. 2 years in Slavonian oak, 1 year in amphora and 2 years in bottle before release.
92p   (tasted 2019/08)

The Meriame vineyard

A Finn, making wine in Serralunga? I just had to visit my Scandinavian friend in Serralunga. Google maps didn´t help me....but eventually I drove into the estate belonging to Riikka and her husband.
They bought the 1,5 ha estate in 2005, located in the Meriame cru. Riikka produces three wines, a Barbera, a Langhe Nebbiolo and a Barolo, and makes about 5.000 bottles.

Riikka looking out over her vineyards

2015 Barbera d´Alba Meriame
The Barbera is open and fine with nots of ripe black cherries, Finnish (what a give away!) licorice, bonfire smoke and warm tiles. Very, very good.
The taste is tight and inky with notes of chocolate covered cherries, scorched earth and a some asphalt notes. A very fine acidity. Long and fine.
89p   (tasted 2019/08)

2014 Langhe Nebbiolo Meriame
A very fine 2014. It has a low keyed intensity on the nose with notes of mushrooms, dried flowers, rosehips and chrushed rocks. Very fine.
The taste is sandy and fine with notes of dried red cherries, forest floor, minerals and herbs. Medium long. A very fine 2014 to drink now while waiting for the 13 and 15`s.
91p   (tasted 2019/08)

2009 Barolo Meriame
The 2009 Barolo is made before Riikka started to replant the vineayrd in sections. This wine is made from 70 year old vines in the Meriame vineyard. The nose is very deep and really old-viney with notes of earth, mushrooms, old tobacco and dried up cherry jam. Very fine. A lovely dried up sweetness to the fruit.
The taste is tight and concentrated with notes of dried figs, tobacco leaves, mushrooms and fir wood. Very, very long. Not all marked by the hot vintage of 2009. Lovely. For drinking now and the coming 8+ years.
93p   (tasted 2019/08)

Behind the church in Serralunga (if you come from the parking lot beneath the castle) you will find the Schiavenza estate. They began bottling their Barolo in 1956 (and a bottle of 1957 stands on a shelf in the tasting room).
Walter welcomed me and showed me the cellar and then we had a fabolous tasting - great wines here - both the present and mature bottles, which I have tasted earlier, see below.
The have 8,5 ha in Serralunga nd 2,5 ha in Perno and produce about 47.000 bottles/year. They aquired land in Prapó in 1996, in Broglio in 2000 and the piece in Cerretta was bought in 2001.

2018 Dolcetto d´Alba
The Dolcetto grapes comes from Serralunga. The nose is racy and spicy with fine notes of ripe raspberries, dry licorice and earthy aromas. Deep, rich and fine.
The taste is juicy and pure with lovely raspberry and blueberry fruit alongside notes of tiles, iron and spices. Very fine.
91p   (tasted 2019/08)

2017 Barbera d´Alba
70% Perno and 30% Serralunga fruit. A deep, sweet, ripe nose with notes of sour/sweet raspberries, fried herbs, flower water and some tobacco aromas. Very, very good.
The taste is structured and broad shouldered with notes of warm herbs, ripe raspberries and scorched earth. Very long and fine.
90p   (tasted 2019/08)

2017 Langhe Nebbiolo
The Nebbiolo grapes for this wine comes from Perno. The nose is deep and refined with notes of roses, warm tiles, cranberries and old tobacco. Laid back and really fine.
The taste is tight and sandy with notes of salmiak, dried cherries, undergrowth and some balsamic notes of. Very, very good.
92p   (tasted 2019/08)

2015 Barolo del Comune di Serralunga
A fine-limbed nose with notes of rosehips, undergrowth, red cherries and a hint of cinnamon. Very, very good.
The taste is young, tight and fine with notes of dark almonds, cherries, violets and chrushed rocks. A salivating acidity, as in all the wines. Long. Very fine. 4+ years.
92p   (tasted 2019/08)

2015 Barolo Broglio
The Broglio is more open on the nose, with notes of red apples, warm tiles, smoke and a hint of tobacco. Deep and fine.
The taste is tighter than the lead on, with notes of pomegranate, smoke, rosehips and sandy tannins in the long, fine finish. 4+ years.
92p   (tasted 2019/08)

2015 Barolo Cerretta
The Cerretta is a masterpiece. The nose is high and energetic with notes of sweet/sour cherries, chrushed rocks, violets and fresh mushrooms. Very refined.
The taste is pure and concentrated with notes of ripe cherries, violets, asphalt and thyme. Very, very long and aristocratic. A must have. 8+ years.
96p   (tasted 2019/08)

2015 Barolo Prapó
The Prapó is the darkest and most structured in the line up, with fine notes of tar, cocoa, dark cherries and salt licorice. Very deep and rich.
The taste is tight and sturdy with notes of ripe black cherries, asphalt, dark roses and a hint of smoke. A long, long finish with broad tannins. 10+ years.
93p   (tasted 2019/08)

2012 Barolo Riserva Prapó
A deep, ripe, sweet nose with notes of dried up cherry jam, warm aspahlt, rosehips and a old oaky aroma, Very deep and fine.
The taste is big and mouth filling with notes of Christmas spices, cherry jam, rose water and scorched earth. Very long. A real mouthful of Barolo. 5+ years.
94p   (tasted 2019/08)

1964 Barolo

1998 Barolo

2003 Barolo Broglio

2010 Barolo Broglio

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