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Sultry Nebbiolo

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Langhe Nebbiolo 2011, Prinsìot, Fratelli Alessandria ($28.45, 12131104)
100% Nebbiolo from ten-year-old vines grown in the Verduno commune. The temperature-controlled (27-28°C) fermentation is with indigenous yeasts and lasts six to nine days. The wine then spends 12 months in large French and Slavonian oak botti, two to three months in oak casks and two months in the bottle. 14.5% ABV.
The 14.5% nearly scared me off but I’m glad it didn’t. Heady nose – if the alcohol stands out anywhere it’s here – of cherry, plum and spice with some distant notes of rose, tar and wood. A sip shows the wine to be a middleweight. There may be more concentration and richness than usual but it’s not at the expense of focus or freshness. The fruit is intense and sweet, even a little cordial-like. Bright acidity cuts the glycerinish texture. Finely astringent tannins add welcome grit and dryness. A faint earthiness colours the finish, which, somewhat surprisingly, stays cool though to the end. Better balanced than I expected it would be. Though not a shrinking violet, it remains true to type: this isn’t a Barolo wannabe. (Buy again? If in the mood for a sultry Nebbiolo to accompany a deep-flavoured dish like osso buco with porcini, yes.)

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Written by carswell

March 9, 2014 at 15:47

Posted in Tasting notes

Tagged with ,

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