2013 Pajoré Sottimano
Lovely elegant delivery of red fruits, rose petals, fragrant and pure. Silky ripe fruits on the palate, good extract of refined rich tannins, bright acid and lovely supple red fruits with some spice coming through on the finish, very lovely. L&S (Apr 2016)
*Case price: Mix any 12 bottles of wine or 6 bottles of Champagne, Spirits or Fortified to get the 'case price' for each bottle.
The 2013 Barbaresco Pajoré brings together power and finesse in a way I am not sure I have seen in this wine before. Translucent, finely sculpted and precise, the Pajoré exudes class. Today, the Pajoré is incredibly primary, with little of its signature flavors developed. Instead, it is the wine's structure, depth and overall feel that place it among the finest wines of the vintage. Drinking range: 2020 - 2033 Rating: 95 Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com (Oct 2016)
Much bigger and darker fruit-accented than usual. Rich, ripe, brooding and will need time. Pajoré is one of Piedmont's top dozen sites for Nebbiolo. Drinking range: 2018 - 2032 Rating: 92 Ian d'Agata, Decanter (Sep 2016)
A dark, enveloping wine, the 2013 Barbaresco Pajoré is pure seduction. Succulent black cherry, plum, spice and menthol flesh out in the glass. In some ways, the Pajoré is the ripest and most obvious of these wines, which is a bit unusual, as Pajoré is often very tightly wound. Still that power and succulence is accompanied by deep layers of spice and balsamic notes that are so typical of Pajoré, one of the greatest sites in all of Piedmont. Naturally, the tannins need time to soften, but this is nevertheless a super-impressive, young Barbaresco from Sottimano that promises to drink well for many, many years. Drinking range: 2018 - 2033 Rating: 95 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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