Operative: Agent White
Objective: Secure an exceptional single vineyard Barolo with an amazing history.
Mission Status: Accomplished!
Current Winery: Fratelli Alessandria
Wine Subject: 2006 Barolo San Lorenzo DOCG
Winemaker: Vittore Alessandria
The greatest of all Italian wines are arguably made with from the Nebbiolo grape. Barolo, from the Piedmont made this grape famous, and for good reason. Most people don’t give Barolo enough time and drink them young, but those patient enough to wait at least 7 – 8 years, and often as much as 20 plus years are handsomely rewarded with a wine that is the ultimate expression of the grape. The most prized bottlings of Barolo are those from an exceptional single vineyard such as today’s from the San Lorenzo.
Look – Dark purple and deep ruby red with very slight brick and orange hues along the edges and a dark clear core. Clusters of slow fat legs ring the glass that are followed by thinner legs hang for an extended time before slowly descending to the wine below.
Smell – This wine has an initially tight nose that once open shows rich and fresh aromas of spiced tangy ripe blackberry, plum and raspberry fruit are layered over a solid licorice base. Deep and complex with savory notes, some floral violets, herbs, mushrooms and earth, zesty Italian tar, and toasted oak.
Feel – Full-bodied, bold and dry, with firm and textured, almost etched tannins (softens as it breathes) that reaches the far corners of the palate. Exceptional acidity and a solid spice and minerality that lingers long into the finish.
Taste – Old world in character but also fresh and lively, this classic wine balances its complex spice and licorice over its plump, tangy and tart black and red fruit. Licorice, savory and earthy flavors blend with zesty tar, floral, fresh herbs and a touch of tobacco emerge and linger framing the fruit perfectly.
Finish – Extremely long with rich, fresh with its tangy plum, blackberry and raspberry fruit fading gently as this wine’s textured tannins, spice minerality and acidity linger with slowly fading.
Conclusion – The 2006 Fratelli Alessandria Barolo San Lorenzo DOCG is a classic old-world wine that is both fresh and lively but at the same time elegant, showing why we love Barolo so much. This wine’s tightly textured tannins hold on tight and don’t let go. The epitome of Barolo is its bold elegant power. An exceptional wine that is a bit on the young side now (open this bottle and let it sit for an hour before you enjoy it). Pair this bold classic with everything simple buttered tagliatelle noodles and shaved truffles to Osso Buco. If enjoying this wine now, be sure to give it plenty of time or decant, otherwise cellar it for up to ten or more years. Buona sera & cin cin!
WINEMAKER INTEL BRIEFING DOSSIER
SUBJECT: Vittore Alessandria
WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY: Show through the wine the elegance and the balance of my territory: the hills of the Langhe area.
WINEMAKER QUOTE: “Wine is the poetry of the Earth.” (Mario Soldati)
FIRST COMMERCIAL WINE RELEASE: The first Barolo produced by our cellar was a 1870 Barolo!
Below is a copy of our interview with Vittore when we featured the previous vintage of this fantastic Cru.
AGENT WHITE: Greetings, Vittore, We are thrilled to be showing your 2005 Barolo San Lorenzo DOCGtoday. Thanks so much for taking some time to answer questions for our Operatives today.
VITTORE: I’m excited to be featured today on The Wine Spies, thanks for giving this opportunity.
WHITE: Was there a specific experience in your life that inspired your love of wine?
VITTORE: I born and I lived in a small village: Verduno in the middle of the Barolo area surrounded by Nebbiolo vineyards. For my family making wine it’s a tradition that has gone on for 150 years.
WHITE: What wine or winemaker has most influenced your winemaking style?
VITTORE: All the wines and the winemakers that are able to give emotions, showing the “terroir” of origin and also stimulating the knowledge of this world.
WHITE: Who do you make wine for?
VITTORE: For wine consumers that love wine.
WHITE: Please tell me a little bit about the wine we are featuring today.
VITTORE: San Lorenzo is an important single vineyard/cru in Verduno, our first bottling of San Lorenzo was in 1997 (we waited that the vines was at least 20 years old, before to start to produce San Lorenzo as single vineyard, before it was a vineyard for the regular Barolo). Our Barolo San Lorenzo is a “traditional style” Barolo. We do the same vinification/maceration and the same ageing for all the 3 crus we produce: after a quite long fermentation/maceration of 18-20 days, it was aged for 8 months in Tonneaux (500 liters) and for 2 years in big oak (botti).
WHITE: What is your favorite pairing with today’s wine?
VITTORE: I think that it could be delicious with a stew of veal. But in any case the best pairing is with a good company!!
WHITE: In your opinion, what makes the Langhe and Barolo region so special?
VITTORE: There are many reasons that make the Langhe so lucky: for example the personal relationship between the producer and its vineyards, its casks and its customers. That it’s possible because, generally, in our region the cellars are family owned ! An other very special feature is the beautiful landscape – very charming-!
WHITE: What is occupying your time at the winery these days?
VITTORE: We have just finished the harvest! It seems a good vintage, the grapes were healthy and the potentiality of the musts seem good! Now we have to pay a lot of attention in cellar to try not loose it!!
WHITE: How would you recommend people approach your wines and wine in general?
VITTORE: First of all with the glass! :) Then I think that the best way is going deeper, to the origin, for example visiting the winery, meeting the wine producer and knowing the territory in which the grape is grown, discovering traditions, old recipes and different flavors.
WHITE: Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
VITTORE: Verduno is unique: it’s one of the eleven villages where you can produce Barolo and the only one where you can produce Verduno Pelaverga, one of the smallest and most particular DOC of Italy. I would suggest to try it!
WHITE: Thank you so much for your time. We learned a lot about you – and your wine. Keep up the great work, we are big fans!
The location of the approximate location of Fratelli Alessandria can be seen in this satellite photo.