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Aldo Conterno Colonnello Barolo 2012

Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
  • JS95
  • WS93
  • WE90
  • RP90
750ML / 14.5% ABV
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  • WS95
  • JS93
  • RP91
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  • JS98
  • WS95
  • WE95
  • RP94
  • JS94
  • RP93
  • WS92
  • WE92
  • WS98
  • WE97
  • RP94
  • WS95
  • RP93
  • WS97
  • RP94
  • WS92
  • RP91
  • WS90
  • WS93
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750ML / 14.5% ABV

Winemaker Notes

The vineyard “Colonnello” is about 45-50 years old and, to maintain it, its vines are replanted from time to time. The main variety of Nebbiolo is Michet and its rootstock is 420 A. The harvest is manual, with grapes selected in the vineyard.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
JS 95
James Suckling
Warmer aromas of cooked meat, ripe strawberry and fresh herbs. Full body, round and chewy tannins. Big and rich. Needs a year or two to soften. Solid.
WS 93
Wine Spectator
The aromas and flavors are a combination of ripe cherry, leather and vanilla that quickly shuts down in the face of dense, dusty tannins. Best from 2020 through 2036.
WE 90
Wine Enthusiast
This opens with aromas suggesting underbrush, tobacco and a whiff of cooking spice. The dense, full-bodied palate offers dark berry, licorice, vanilla and a hint of oak alongside bracing tannins. A hint of sage closes the finish.
RP 90
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
Like the Barolo Bussia Cicala, the 2012 Barolo Bussia Colonnello steps out with heavy footing. You feel the weight of the vintage, yet the bouquet shows fewer of those brilliant aromatic accents that are so magnificently delivered in cooler vintages. The aromas are all there - wild berry, balsam herb, cola and licorice - but the intensity is somewhat muted. The wine also shows tightness and astringency in terms of tannins that will relax as the wine continues its evolution.
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Aldo Conterno

Aldo Conterno

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Aldo Conterno, Italy
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Aldo Conterno's family has been producing and ageing the great Piedmontese wines for more than five generations. Today the winery, which is situated in Località Bussia Soprana at Monforte d'Alba, still vinifies grapes that come exclusively from its own vineyards in the hills around Alba, in the heart of the Barolo production zone. Our vineyards have a southerly/ south-westerly exposure for the 80%, whereas their altitude is approximatively 480 metres above sea-level. The soil is formed by some strata of more or less compact grey-brown sand, alternated with white and bluish calcareous marls. Rational cultivation techniques, controlled must fermentation, and traditional system of vinification and ageing combine to produce great wines of fine quality.

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The center of the production of the world’s most exclusive and age-worthy red wines made from Nebbiolo, the Barolo region includes five core townships: La Morra, Monforte d’Alba, Serralunga d’Alba, Castiglione Falletto and the Barolo village itself, as well as a few outlying villages. The landscape of Barolo, characterized by prominent and castle-topped hills, is full of history and romance centered on the Nebbiolo grape. Its wines, with the signature “tar and roses” aromas, have a deceptively light garnet color but full presence on the palate and plenty of tannins and acidity. In a well-made Barolo, one can expect to find complexity and good evolution with notes of, for example, strawberry, cherry, plum, leather, truffle, anise, fresh and dried herbs, tobacco and violets.

There are two predominant soil types here, which distinguish Barolo from the lesser surrounding areas. Compact and fertile Tortonian sandy marls define the vineyards farthest west and at higher elevations. Typically the Barolo wines coming from this side, from La Morra and Barolo, can be approachable relatively early on in their evolution and represent the “feminine” side of Barolo, often closer in style to Barbaresco with elegant perfume and fresh fruit.

On the eastern side of the region, Helvetian soils of compressed sandstone and chalks are less fertile, producing wines with intense body, power and structured tannins. This more “masculine” style comes from Monforte d’Alba and Serralunga d’Alba. The township of Castiglione Falletto covers a spine with both soils types.

The best Barolo wines need 10-15 years before they are ready to drink, and can further age for several decades.

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Responsible for some of the most elegant and age-worthy wines in the world, Nebbiolo, named for the ubiquitous autumnal fog (called nebbia in Italian), is the star variety of northern Italy’s Piedmont region. Grown throughout the area as well as in the neighboring Valle d’Aosta and Valtellina, it reaches its highest potential in the Piemontese villages of Barolo and Barbaresco. This finicky grape needs a very particular soil type and climate in order to thrive. Outside of Italy, growers are still very much in the experimentation stage but some success has been achieved in parts of California. Tiny amounts are produced in Washington, Virginia, Mexico and Australia.

In the Glass

Nebbiolo at its best is an elegant variety with velveteen tannins, mouthwatering acidity and a captivating perfume. Common characteristcs of a well-made Nebbiolo can include roses, violets, licorice, sandalwood, spicebox, smoke, potpourri, black plum, red cherry and orange peel. Light brick in color, Nebbiolo is a more powerful wine than one might expect, and its firm tannins typically need time to mellow.

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 cuisine. The region is famous for its white truffles, wild boar ragu and tajarin pasta, all perfect companions to Nebbiolo.

Sommelier Secret

If you can’t afford to drink Barolo and Barbaresco every night, try the more wallet-friendly, earlier-drinking Langhe Nebbiolo or Nebbiolo d'Alba. Also search out the fine offerings of the nearby Roero region. North of the Langhe and Roero, find earthy and rustic versions of the variety (known here as “Spanna”) in Ghemme and Gattinara.

FBR118207_2012 Item# 163178