From the Basarin vineyard, but from younger vines 10-15 years of age. Lovely, red fruit, mineral, tar and floral notes. Palate has grip and power, rich full tannins, core of red fruit, mineral bright with good length. L&S (Mar 2015)
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Sottimano use younger vines for a younger drinking style of Nebbiolo than their more serious Barbaresco cuvées, and the style here is all about succulence of raspberry and red cherry fruit, with fine tannins and crisp, freshening acidity. Rating: 89 www.thewinegang.com (Mar 2017)
The 2013 Langhe Nebbiolo is a real stunner. Translucent and weightless in the glass, with tons of pure pedigree, the 2013 hits all the right notes. Sweet lavender, mint, violet and sage notes lift from the glass in a precise, aromatic Nebbiolo to enjoy over the next decade or so. What a gorgeous wine this is. Sottimano's Langhe Nebbiolo emerges from Barbaresco-designated vineyards in the Basarin vineyard. Drinking range: 2016 - 2022 Rating: 92-92 Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com (Dec 2015)
Sottimano's 2013 Langhe Nebbiolo exhibits a ripe and plump fruit profile with simple aromas and tonic linearity. This simple approach fits the wine well and will appeal to those looking for a well-priced red to pair with lamb or roast pork. It also shows good intensity in the mouth with a lean, streamlined consistency and balanced freshness. Drinking range: 2015 - 2020 Rating: 90 Monica Larner, The Wine Advocate (www.robertparker.com) (Jun 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.
Nebbiolo must be one of the world's great grape varieties, but it rarely thrives with any virtue outside of its native Piedmont. It is, of course, the variety behind the great wines of Barolo and Barbaresco, but there are other Nebbiolos at less lofty prices that offer that signiature combination of big-boned tannin and structure and delicate violet and tar fruit. Here we offer 'declassified' Barolo from Andrea Oberto, 'declassified' Barbarescos from Sottimano and Cigliuti, aswell as Bricco Maiolica's cracking 'Cumot' Nebbiolo made in the land between the two great regions.
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