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Pio Cesare Barolo 2004

Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
  • JS95
  • WS94
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0% ABV
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  • RP95
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  • WE94
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  • WS90
  • RP94
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4.0 8 Ratings
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4.0 8 Ratings
0% ABV

Winemaker Notes

#6 Wine Spectator Top 100 of 2008

Barolo is the most fascinating of all the Pio Cesare wines and features an air of aristocracy and a domineering personality. Yet the Barolo is rich with hidden hues enjoyed by those who take the time to savor the wine. Pio Cesare Barolo is intentionally "traditional", austere and important and a wine to be approached thoughtfully.

The color is an intense glossy garnet, with orange reflections. The bouquet is ethereal, with hints of violets, blackberry jam, licorice and cloves. The palate is dry and austere with lengthy tannins. The wine ends with a long concentrated finish accompanied by a lingering hint of almonds.

""Extremely attractive aromas of blackberry, fresh mushroom and mahogany. Full-bodied, with lovely fruit, soft tannins and a long finish. Chewy, yet balanced and pretty. Builds on the palate. Big and juicy. Best after 2010." 94 Points
Wine Spectator

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
JS 95
James Suckling
What a nose, I love this! Decadent and intense with blueberries, meat, truffles, and a foie gras like character. Full and very velvety, super integrated, with a long and caressing finish. A triumph. Pull the cork, no need to wait.
WS 94
Wine Spectator
Extremely attractive aromas of blackberry, fresh mushroom and mahogany. Full-bodied, with lovely fruit, soft tannins and a long finish. Chewy, yet balanced and pretty. Builds on the palate. A big and juicy red.
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
Plenty of leather, rose and vanilla from toasty French oak make for a very pretty opening. The full-bodied palate shows exuberant cherry and boysenberry flavors wrapped in a refined tannin structure. A modern expression that can be enjoyed now or laid down to await more complexity.
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Pio Cesare

Pio Cesare

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Pio Cesare, Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
Image of winery
Pio Cesare has been producing wine for more than 100 years and through generations. The tradition began in 1881, when Pio Cesare started gathering grapes in his vineyards and purchasing those of some selected and reliable farmers in the hills of Barolo and Barbaresco districts.

At Pio Cesare, there has always been a conviction that great wine can come only from the finest grapes and the winery's output has always been limited through adherence to the highest standards. Pio Cesare limits its production by using only the most mature and healthy grapes. The ripening of the grapes is carefully monitored and the harvest is rigidly controlled with each grape selected by hand.

Today, the estate is managed by Pio Boffa, great-grandson of Pio Cesare. Under his stewardship, the wines of Pio Cesare have become famous throughout the world. Great strides have been made in quality, and single vineyard offerings have dazzled the wine press.

Home to the world’s most powerful wines made from the Nebbiolo grape, the Barolo village of Piedmont has long been known as “the wine of kings, the king of wines.” There are two predominant soil types here, which distinguish Barolo from neighboring Barbaresco as well as from the lesser surrounding areas. Compact and fertile Tortonian sandy marls define the vineyards to the west, typically resulting in fresher, fruitier, and softer wines that are approachable relatively early on in their evolution. This is sometimes referred to as the “feminine” side of Barolo and is closer in style to Barbaresco with its elegant perfume. On the eastern side of the region, Helvetian sandstone clay soils are chalkier and less fertile, producing age-worthy wines with full body and structured tannins—the more “masculine” style. The best Barolo wines need 10-15 years before they are ready to drink, and can further age for several decades.

Barolo is one of the world’s most distinctive red wines, and experienced tasters typically have no trouble picking it out of a lineup. In addition to Nebbiolo’s signature “tar and roses” aroma, one can expect to find complex notes of strawberries, cherries, leather, white truffles, anise, fresh and dried herbs, tobacco, violets, plum, and much more. Despite its deceptively light garnet color, Barolo has a full presence on the palate and plenty of tannin and acidity. The traditional style of Barolo relies on the use of neutral large wooden vats for aging, which do not impart flavor to the wine and preserve the natural character of the Nebbiolo grape. Meanwhile, a more modern, “international” style of Barolo utilizes small French oak barrels to add spicy, woody flavors and a softer texture resulting in earlier drinkability.

Nebbiolo

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Responsible for some of the most elegant and age-worthy wines in the world, Nebbiolo is the star variety of northern Italy’s Piedmont region. Grown throughout the area as well as in neighboring Valle d’Aosta and Valtellina, it is at its best in the Piedmontese villages of Barolo and Barbaresco. Nebbiolo is a finicky grape, and needs a very particular soil type in order to thrive. Outside of Italy, it often fails to show the captivating aromas for which it is so beloved, but some success has been achieved in parts of California.

In the Glass

Nebbiolo is an elegant variety with mouthwatering acidity and a compelling perfume of rose petals, violets, fresh tar, licorice, clay, and dried cherries. Light in color and body, Nebbiolo is a more powerful wine than one might expect, and its firm tannins typically need time to mellow. With age, it develops a velvety texture and a stunningly complex bouquet.

Perfect Pairings

Nebbiolo’s love affair with food starts in Piedmont, which is home to the Slow Food movement and some of Italy’s best produce. The region is famous for its white truffles and wild boar ragu, both of which make for excellent pairings with Nebbiolo.

Sommelier Secret

If you love Barolo and Barbaresco but can’t afford to drink them every night, you can try the more wallet-friendly, earlier-drinking Langhe Nebbiolo. But Piedmont’s best-kept secret is the northern part of the region, where outstanding earthy and rustic versions of the variety (known here as “Spanna”) are produced in Ghemme and Gattinara.

DOB95547_2004 Item# 95547