Barolo 2009: panel tasting results
Rocche dei Manzoni, Vigna Cappella di Santo Stefano, Monforte d’Alba
Decanter average score: 18.5pts/20 (95/100pts)
Individual judges’ scores: Paolo Basso 18.5 Ian D’Agata 18.75 Michael Garner 18.5
Founded in 1976 by Valentino Migliorini (Rodolfo Migliorini runs things today), who quickly made a name for himself with very impressive wines. Always an innovator, Valentino was one of the first to successfully make a sparkling wine by secondary fermentation in the bottle (still considered one of the best in Piedmont) and he innovated with oak regimes for Barolo too. The Cappella di Santo Stefano Barolo differs from other sites owned by the estate – it’s a sandy, generally southwest-facing site rich in minerals, located in the Perno sub-section of Monforte. It’s characterised by smoother, rounder tannins and less power than the Big’d Big Barolo.
Paolo Basso Very seducing nose of violet, roses, sweet spices and blackcurrant. Rich, harmonious and well-extracted, it displays great personality and well-integrated, refined tannins. Long finish.
Ian D’Agata Decadently ripe red cherry, raspberry jam and strawberry liqueur on the nose. Then smooth and sweet, red berry and cherry flavours that last and last, spiced up by aromatic nuances. A deceptively easy-to-drink wine despite 36 months in oak – I would never have guessed.
Michael Garner An aromatic style, attractively round and ripe with good oak integration. Plush mouthfeel with juicy, ripe and forward fruit flavours. Understated structure with oak coming through on the finish. Something of a crowd-pleaser, but a fine, balanced finsh.
Price £68 (2008) Decorum Vintners, Pipai