G.D. Vajra Dolcetto d'Alba 2011
Dolcetto from Piedmont, Italy
Luigi Baudana is the last scion of one of the oldest wine families of Serralunga d'Alba. His winery has been a secret for a bunch of fortunate wine lovers for over thirty years, producing a limited amount of Barolo and other wines. In 2003 Luigi and wife Fiorina started to look for a future for their estate. The research lasted long, until they found in Giuseppe, Francesca and Isidoro Vaira, children of Aldo and Milena of G.D. Vajra, Barolo, the enthusiasm, energies and will to preserve the past history and prolong the future of this beautiful little jewel. The three kids, in their early twenties, consider themselves ‘i guardiani' [the guardians] of this century-long winery and have started operations in 2008 vintage in the Baudana cellar. Farming is sustainable and takes advantage of organic and biodynamic practices; no chemical manipulation occur to the wines.
Wine Spectator - "A graphite aroma segues to cherry, raspberry and spice flavors in this stylish version, supple and polished, with a long aftertaste of fresh fruit and sweet spices. Drink now through 2018. 4,800 cases made."
The Wine Advocate - "Vajra's 2011 Dolcetto d’Alba emerges from the glass with blackberries, smoke, game and incense. This is a decidedly dark, brooding Dolcetto that at times recalls Syrah in its flavor profile. Firm tannins frame the long, insistent finish. This is a fabulous showing and a serious over achiever. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2016. "
G.D. Vajra Winery
The winery is located at West side of Barolo Common, in Vergne locality. Inherited in 1972 by Aldo Vaira it's, today, a solid reality where the wine quality and the love for work are principal features. Here, the typical vines of Piedmont are cultivated with a great respect for the vocation of every plot of land. The history says that these lands have been formed millions of years ago, and geologically must be referred to as the Tortonian, the typical soil of Barolo and La Morra, with calcareous marl, white and blue, inserted into rocky residuals. Thanks to that, the wines are elegant, fragrant, fruity with a particular aging capacity. View all G.D. Vajra Wines
Notable FactsNot just regulated to red wine, Piedmont also produces some notable whites, particularly those near the district of Gavi and Asti. Gavi produces still white wine from the Cortese grape. The wine is dry with a crisp, citrus-like acidity – fairly neutral but pleasant. Arneis is another grape/wine made in the area, creating a fuller wine that displays some nuttiness in the aroma and taste. Asti is well known for its sparkling wine – in particular Asti Spumante and Moscato d'Asti. Asti Spumante is typically higher in alcohol, sweetness & fizziness, while its higher-class cousin, Mostcato d'Asti, contains lower alcohol levels, a few less bubbles, and a more restrained and delicate representation of Moscato fruit.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.