“As most sage apostles of Bacchus have known for some time, Piedmontese quality wines are not restricted to the Langa area. True: two problem years, 2002 for the Barolo, 2003 for the Barbaresco, seriously limited expression, though for opposite reasons in each case, so that great bottles of the celebrated Reds are rare. Fortunately for the zone and for lovers of these fluids, there is no lack of some excellent 2001 Barolos, as well as a few hard-to-find Barbarescos, brought to market a year late, nor of some top-class Riserve of both. Still in the world of Albaâ€™s wines, we find that the Roero 2003 from the left bank of the Tanaro show, in a convincing and compact group, greater temperament and balance. High marks, too, for the Alba Barbera â€“â€“ like its Asti cousin, it enjoyed a memorable 2004. As to the Dolcetto, 2005 turned out better than expected, with a common factor of freshness and fragrance shared by all the denominations from Dogliani to Diano.
One can discover good things also beyond Astiâ€™s borders. Nebbiolo, for example, reaches noble expressions also in the Regionâ€™s north, where several historic houses â€“â€“ Sella, Antichi Vigneti di Cantalupo, Travaglini and Antoniolo conspicuous among them â€“â€“ are offering an animus that differs from that of the potent Langaroli Reds but is neither less profound nor less suggestive. Noteworthy since the last few seasons: Erbaluce di Caluso, which might well aspire to become the autochthonous White with the greatest personality of the Region, provided it becomes more choral and homogenous, alongside the Timorasso of the Colli Tortonesi, which found its all-time best year in 2004.
Gavi has been reborn from the ashes of the Eighties and is proving year after year, rather more so Arneis, to possess all the qualities needed for playing front-stage centre among Piedmontâ€™s Whites.”
Text from the Espresso Guide to Italian Wines 2007. Author and Co-Author Ernesto Gentili and Fabio Rizzari. Editor of English version Filippo Bartolotta