2010 Cotta' Sottimano
More clay here. Lightish ruby. More dusty and stemmy on the nose – more herbal – than the 2015. Dry, super-fine tannins like tissue paper. Floral and chalky and still so youthful. Immensely long. Drinking range: 2020 - 2035 Rating: 17.5 Julia Harding MW, www.JancisRobinson.com (Apr 2019)
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A wine with dried-mushroom and cedar character, plus hints of plums. Full-bodied, chewy and firm. This is clearly the best wine of Sottimano in 2010. Needs time to soften a little: better in 2016. Rating: 93 James Suckling, www.jamessuckling.com(Apr 2014)
Bright, saturated medium red. Raspberry, brown spices and earth on the nose, accented by a note of wild sage. At once silky and bright, showing tangy floral lift to the intense, tightly coiled red berry and earth flavors. Juicy, sharply delineated wine with a sexy topnote of blood orange. Finishes with fine tannins and terrific persistence and lift. Barbaresco for the Burgundy lover. Rating: 93 Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar(Nov 2013)
The 2010 Barbaresco Cottà shows considerable breadth and body, but it is the wine's striking inner perfume and sheer beauty that stands out most. Dark red cherries, plums, mocha, spices and leather blossom in a wine endowed with serious depth. A rich, generous finish rounds things out in style. This is another drop-dead gorgeous wine from Sottimano Drinking range: 2016 - 2030 Rating: 94+ Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com(Oct 2013)
'Andrea Sottimano's 2011s and 2012s are fabulous. The 2011 Barbarescos capture the radiance of the year, while the just-bottled 2012s show gorgeous purity of fruit along with a greater sense of restraint. Readers who haven't tasted the Sottimano wines in a few years will want to check out these superb, pedigreed Barbarescos, as quite a bit has changed here, particularly over the last 5-6 years. Today, the approach to farming is decidedly less interventionalist than in the past. Sottimano no longer uses pesticides and herbicides. Yields aren't quite as dramatically low as they once were. The same hands off approach carries through to winemaking. Cool temperatures encourage slow and long malolactic fermentations, a long aging on the lees with minimal rackings, an approach that is much more typical in Burgundy than it is in Piedmont. Today's wines are transparent, crystalline and full of personality. There is no question quality has never been higher.'
Antonio Galloni, Autumn 2014.
This sixteen hectare estate is based in the Cotta' region of Barbaresco, and the Sottimano family have over the years bought outstanding vineyards in the 'crus' of Currà, Cottà, Fausoni and Pajore. Yields are kept very low and the winemaking as natural as possible, without the use of pesticides or artificial fertilisers, using only natural yeasts and bottling without filtering or fining. All of these 'crus' are given exactly the same oak treatment so as to allow the individual 'terroirs' express their character (fermentation in barriques, of which 30% new, followed by 18 to 20 months in neutral barriques).
There are five different terroirs with Nebbiolo planted within the estate:
- Basarin, with a mixture of clay, limestone and sand, is at about four hundred metres above sea level. This produces the estate's Langhe Nebbiolo, which is basically 'village Barbaresco', as the vines are very young (10-15 years old). It makes for wines that are always very elegant, refined, tannins are silky and softer, nuanced of spices and herbs (eucalyptus).
- Fausoni, on sand and clay, makes wines that are always very elegant - mint, liquorice and little red fruits. This is in the historical part of Neive.
- Currà, on clay and limestone, is one of the smallest cru of the whole appellation, wines are always very intense and powerful, hardbodied and with good tannins. Hints of spices and smoke are characteristics of this area.
- Cottà, on limestone with clay,is is one of the oldest cru in Barbaresco, vines are always very old here (fifty years and older) and the colours are just a little bit lighter than other vineyards (because of the clay), but they have a very distinctive nose of dark fruits and mint, a great elegance and mineral tannins.
- Pajore is almost entirely on limestone with just a little clay. This is the highest vineyard of all, at 420 metres above sea level. The vines are very old, and it is always the most mineral and elegant of the four Barbarescos. Limestone brings into the wine a great purity of fruit, a distinctive aroma of spices and tobacco (cigar box) and a very unusual quality of tannins, firm but very mineral.
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