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2011 Giacomo Conterno - Barolo (Cascina Francia)

ITALY / PIEDMONT / SERRALUNGA
  • 93 WS
  • Variety
    Nebbiolo
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SKU: 43702-2011-750-3A
  • Vinous | Rating: 97

    Conterno's 2011 Barolo Francia lifts from the glass with the most finessed, exquisite aromatics imaginable. Over the last decade, Monfortino has not been made three times; 2003, 2007 and 2009, all warm vintages for Piedmont. In each of those years, the Francia was a big, racy Barolo. But the 2011 is totally different. Readers will find a sublime, aromatically lifted Barolo that has virtually nothing in common with 2003, 2007 or 2009. Freshly cut flowers, mint, hard candy and a hint of vanillin are some of the notes that are woven together. In 2011, the Francia is a Barolo of nearly indescribable class. As a reminder, in 2011 Roberto Conterno did not bottle his flagship Barolo Riserva Monfortino. All of the juice was blended into the Francia, which, as readers will have noted, is now called Francia rather than Cascina Francia.
    Author: Antonio Galloni
  • Wine Spectator | Rating: 93

    Mint, cherry, leather and spice notes are married to dense, assertive tannins in this red. Shows an underlying vein of mineral as this builds to a long finish. Tight and vibrant. Best from 2019 through 2033. 1,666 cases made.
    Author: Bruce Sanderson
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  • Cantine Giacomo Conterno wines are among some of the finest Barolo produced in all of Piedmont. Made by tradionalist methods, his winemaking began sometime around 1908 - with family viticulture roots dating back to the 18th century.

    Giacomo Conterno's two sons, Giovanni and Aldo Conterno, formally took over the estate in 1961. With the older Giovanni Conterno already responsible for winemaking since the 1959 vintage, Aldo Conterno eventually parted ways over conflicting winemaking philosophies with his brother, and he then founded his own estate: Poderi Aldo Conterno in 1969. Both wineries share the view that the "modernist" approach (using small oak barrels and shorter maceration times) undermines the inherent fruit of the Nebbiolo by adding too much vanilla flavor to the wine. Roberto Conterno, became the 4th generation to man the helm in 2003, and has continued the traditions, while expanding the estate's holdings to include 3 hectares of Ceretta vines.

    Today, Conterno's Monfortino Riserva (their Grand Cru) is only produced in exceptional years - at times when the full expression of the Nebbiolo grape can be seen in the wines. A lot like the wines of Giacosa and Gaja, Conterno wines are deserving of a place in any cellar for their age-ability both as an investment or eventual drinking pleasure.

    *Pictured (left) - 'The Arione Single Vineyard purchased by Cantina Giacomo Conterno'
    Piedmont, which literally means “foot of the mountain,” produces some of Italy's finest red wines. Its clay, limestone, and sand soils are home to the legendary Barolo and Barbaresco wines, made from the extremely age-worthy Nebbiolo variety. Dolcetto and Barbera are considered to be more “workhorse” varieties, and produce the largest quantity of wine. The region is tucked in the cool northwest corner of the country, surrounded on three sides by the Alps. Fog often blankets the region, ensuring long, cool growing seasons. 

    Nebbiolo is the king of Piedmont, and usually the only grape in the Barolo and Barbaresco wines of this Italian region. A continental climate brings long summers and a substantial amount of rainfall, allowing for extended time on the vine and optimal ripeness. As a result, Nebbiolo is high in both acid and tannin, bringing a beautiful balance to these wines and making them suitable for long-term ageing. The typical flavors of Nebbiolo include red currant, strawberry, roses, leather, and anise.

    In Barolo, with its high altitude, Nebbiolo develops perfumed aromas of sour cherries, herbs, and dried flowers. Barolo DOCG wines must be aged for a minimum of three years with at least 18 months in oak before release. Further ageing in bottle adds complex aromas of truffle, tar, and leather. Nebbiolo from Barbaresco is less perfumed and must be aged for a minimum of two years with at least nine months in oak before release.  Some of the best examples of this variety come from Bruno Giacosa, Gaja, Giacomo Conterno, and Roberto Voerzio.

    The delicate aromas, bold tannin, and high acid of Nebbiolo pair best with foods high in butter, fat and olive oil. Classic examples include truffles, prosciutto, boar ragu, pork loin, and a range of cheeses, but it is also a great match for Asian cuisine.

    Collector Data For This Wine

    • 205 bottles owned
    • 25 collectors