We are really pleased to announce that we have added a new Barolo producer to the range of growers with whom we work, namely Francesco Rinaldi & Figli. Please see Simon's offer, below.
This estate, founded in 1870, is run today by Paola and Piera Rinaldi and extends over ten hectares; 80% of the vineyards lie within the Barolo region and almost half within the two leading sites of Cannubi and Brunate. These two vineyards must count amongst the finest sites across all Barolo, with Cannubi as perhaps the most historic. Beyond these two notable Cru, they also own small parcels in Sarmassa (Barolo), La Cordana (Castiglione Falleto) and Rocche dell’Annunziata (La Morra), all of which are blended to make their impressive Barolo normale.
Recent investments in the cellar seem to have breathed new life here, possibly leading to a step up in purity and precision in the wines. Looking at the huge old oak botti that are employed for ageing, you are quickly assured that everything here remains traditional. Indeed, at our recent visit, Paola explained the difficulty of gaining access to the ageing cellar when replacing the botti, each of which has capacity of 50,000 litres!
I was hugely impressed by the 2015s; they married together an elevated note of ripeness to a remarkably classic profile. The contrast between the two Cru shines through given the clarity of the fruit. Perhaps most striking of all is the overriding sense of harmony that these wines revealed – a character trait that was not necessarily easily won in the 2015 vintage. Then again, working two such impressive vineyards as these, the terroir makes itself known, if you are able to harness the individuality of the characters via the winemaking approach. At Francesco Rinaldi that is very much the case.
2015 Barolo, Cannubi, Francesco Rinaldi
£235 per 6 bottle case in bond
From a 2.8-hectare parcel on the prestigious hill of Cannubi, right behind the Rinaldi cellars.
Bright in the glass, with scented, juicy dark red fruit aromas, the 2015 Cannubi shows terrific class; richness of fruit more than matches up to an assertive structure. More expressive than you might expect at this young stage, this vintage reveals a compelling fruit, capturing characters of juicy dark cherry, pomegranate, mint, liquorice with a lifted, scented quality too. Despite its mineral backbone and structure, this impressive Barolo shows admirable refinement and elegance; the tannins are wonderfully ripe and finely- expressed and mineral-inflected. The sense of energy and undeniable persistence promise great things to come given time in bottle. Consider me sold! (SL) Drink 2025 to 2042.
2015 Barolo, Brunate, Francesco Rinaldi
£225 per 6 bottle case in bond
From a two-hectare parcel, that perfectly straddles the border between La Morra and Barolo, with 50% in each commune.
With a vivid, purplish hue in the glass, the 2015 Brunate boasts a seductive sweetly ripe dark cherry and blueberry fruit on both nose and palate. Texturally impressive and finely nuanced, notes of damson, plum and cherry meld with a darker balsamic touch in this impressive Brunate. Certainly, one of the less austere vintages, there is still a brooding quality to the fruit. The sense of copious fruit is held in check by a finely assertive tannic frame. What impresses most here in this traditionally styled Barolo is the layered depth of fruit that balances so well with the evident structure. Seriously fine and ageworthy. (SL) 2025- 2042+.
I am very pleased to have secured an ongoing allocation. Please let us know of your interest. Our full 2015 Barolo vintage overview will following in the coming days, although do keep in mind that Barolo releases are often staggered over a period of months. We are in the process of compiling a comprehensive list of the wines to be offered this vintage, complete with tasting notes, so please watch this space. In the meantime, I urge you to consider these two exceptional Cru Barolo of incredible value.