2013 Cottá Sottimano
Less pronounced but more concentrated cherry and strawberry fruit, nice density, mint, herbs. Slightly fleshier on the palate greater fruit ripeness, cherry and plum, floral with spice and mint on the long finish. L&S (Apr 2016)
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Robust, tough, reticent nose of raspberry fruit. Rich, full-bodied and concentrated style, but enlivened by lively acidity and spiciness. There are ample tannins, but this is fresh, zesty and long. Drinking range: 2019 - 2035 Rating: 90 Stephen Brook, Decanter.com(Jul 2017)
The 2013 Barbaresco Cottà is super-finessed in this vintage. Explosive and powerful yet also super-refined, the 2013 is infused with the essence of dark fruit, violet, lavender and menthol, with elegant, silky tannins that wrap around the succulent mid-palate and finish. Drinking range: 2019 - 2033 Rating: 94 Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com(Oct 2016)
As always, the 2013 Barbaresco Cottà is a wine of amplitude and breadth. Sweet dark cherry, pomegranate, mint, spices and leather meld together effortlessly. The Cottà has a bit less delineation and nuance than some of the other wines in the range, but more immediacy and mid-palate juiciness. As the years have passed, so many wines in this lineup have improved, but the Cottà has remained pretty much static, for better or worse. Drinking range: 2018 - 2033 Rating: 94-94 Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com(Dec 2015)
'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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