Many of you have been telling us of your growing interest in Italian wines, particularly the serious reds from Piedmont and Tuscany. So we are delighted to tell you we have just shipped the wines of two exceptional estates to add to our ever growing portfolio from this diverse and fascinating country.
Piedmont: Busso Estate
Piedmont is Italy’s pre-eminent fine wine region, home to Barolo and Barbaresco. Located in the north-west of the country with a continental climate, Piedmont is influenced culturally and climatically by the surrounding Alps and Ligurian Apennines. Piedmont's most important fine wine region is Langhe, south of Alba, which incorporates Barolo and Barbaresco. The power behind these wines comes from the Nebbiolo grape, endowing them with the structure to age gracefully. The second red grape of importance in Piedmont is Barbera followed by Dolcetto, the early ripener which also offers enticing early drinking. Each has its own unique character.
The Busso family has been producing wine since 1953. They hand harvest all the grapes on their 10 hectares of vineyards and are stringent about the careful handling of their fruit. This attention to detail shows in the wines which regularly attain Parker points in the 90s. The top wines are available in tiny quantities but come highly recommended.
Barbera d’Alba Busso 2011 – £17.60 / 23.42€ case x 12 £190.08 / 252.90€
The Busso family motto is The wine is a reflection of the territory. Ideal vineyard exposure and soil content provide the elements needed for the creation of great wines. The approach is one of environmental awareness with chemicals and pesticides scrupulously avoided. For the Barbera, fermentation and maceration takes place in stainless steel tanks temperature controlled to 28°-30° C, followed by ageing for 10 months in large oak barrels and a further 6 months in bottle. The resulting wine is full-bodied and fruity with aromas reminiscent of cherry and cassis.
Dolcetto d’Alba 2012 – £14.99 / 20.35€ case x 12 £161.89 / 219.78€
Following fermentation in stainless steel tanks, the Dolcetto spends a furher 10 months ageing in stainless steel and 2 months in bottle. It has a deep red colour with violet hues. It exhibits a perfume that is fruity and elegant with floral notes. It has typical Dolcetto characteristics of low acidity allied to a soft, round, fruity profile with hints of liquorice and almonds.
Barbaresco Stefanetto 2008 £45 / 57€ case x 12 £486 / 615.60€
"The 2008 Barbaresco San Stunet S. Stefanetto is one of the most harmonious, complete wines I have tasted from Piero Busso in a long time. Dark cherries, menthol and spices flesh out nicely in this Barbaresco, Busso's only wine from the village of Treiso. Sweet balsamic notes appear later, adding further dimensions of complexity. The S. Stefanetto remains classy and elegant, with a mid-weight personality that will offer rewarding drinking for a number of years. Menthol and licorice linger on the finish. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2022. 92 pts." (Antonio Galloni, eRobertParker.com, Oct 2011).
Barbaresco Mondino 2009 £29.99 / 38.85€ case x 12 £323.89 / 419.58€
After fermentation in temperature controlled stainless steel tanks, this 100% Nebbiolo (the same grape used in Barolo) spends 18 months in large oak barrels with a further 6 months in bottle. The wine is garnet red in the glass and has a nose that is harmonious, balanced and reveals fruity aromas with delicate spices and flowery undertones. On the palate, this wine is full-bodied and elegant with round, textured tannins.
"The 2009 Barbaresco Mondino possesses a little more textural richness and depth than the Borgese, but it shares a similar aromatic and flavor profile, along with giving the distinct impression it is best suited for drinking over the next few years. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2017.89 pts." (AntonioGalloni, eRobertParker.com, Oct 2012).