Friday, December 2, 2016

Two Astonishing Barolos

Massolino is a traditional Piedmont producer. This means he uses long maceration times for his Barolos, with an emphasis on tannic structure. This was born out in the two Barolos I recently drank from 2005: the 2005 Massolino Barolo and the 2005 Massolino Barolo Margheria. The first is a blended wine, the second the single vineyard wine from the famous Serralunga vineyard.

Both wines were full-bodied. I did not taste much fruit. The wines were very dry, with earthy and tar flavours. The structure was good and dominated by dusty tannins. The Margheria showed a bit more intensity. I only drank one glass on the first night.

Scores: 90/0 and 92/0

I skip over night two to night three. Something astonishing is happening. The strong tannins have been raised like a curtain and the wines are now showing cherry and raspberry flavours, as well as minerality. The Margheria has benefited the most. The wine is now elegant, with good intensity and a lovely balanced texture. The tannins have softened, and the finish is now long and smooth.

Scores: 92/+ and 95/++

The lesson here: Barolo, inparticular when traditionally made, must be decanted. 

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