Gaja Costa Russi 2016  Front Label
Gaja Costa Russi 2016  Front LabelGaja Costa Russi 2016  Front Bottle Shot

Gaja Costa Russi 2016

  • JD98
  • WS97
  • W&S97
  • JS97
  • RP96
  • WE95
750ML / 14% ABV
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  • JS97
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  • WS95
  • RP93
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  • JS98
  • V98
  • RP95
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  • RP94
  • V94
  • WS93
  • WE93
  • JS93
  • RP95
  • JS95
  • WS94
  • WE95
  • RP94
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  • RP98
  • WS97
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  • WS96
  • RP96
  • WS97
  • RP95
  • WS94
  • RP91
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750ML / 14% ABV

Winemaker Notes

Dark ruby/purple. Beautifully elegant aroma's of violets, red fruits, citrusy notes and spicy plum rise from the glass. The wine has a very clear fruit expression, opening on the palate with red orange, plum and a hint of licorice. The balance between aroma and flavor is striking. Costa Russi, of the three single-vineyards, seems to be the least structured, yet it has remarkable texture, mouth-filling fruit, monumental length and impresses with it's harmony and class. The tannins are firm but velvety, and the wines finishes with notes of dried roses and violets, classic Barbaresco characteristics best expressed in only the very top vintages.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
JD 98
Jeb Dunnuck
The 2016 Barbaresco Costa Russi is a more floral, sappy Barbaresco, offering textbook notes of black cherries, rose petals, sappy herbs, and violets. It's one of the more vibrant, juicy, and perfumed wines in the lineup and has medium to full body, bright yet integrated acidity, and the same incredibly polished yet certainly present tannins found in all these 2016s. This is another elegant 2016 that never puts a foot wrong.
Rating: 98+
WS 97
Wine Spectator
This delicate red features floral, strawberry, cherry, currant and loamy earth aromas and flavors, showing terrific balance. A line of firm tannins adds support, and the finish is long and expansive. Best from 2023 through 2045.
W&S 97
Wine & Spirits
Costa Russi, a ten-acre plot just below Sorì Tildìn in the Roncagliette MGA, enjoys southern and western exposures; in 2016, it produced a beautifully aromatic wine. It opens with a garden of floral and herbal scents that lead into precise flavors of red cherry, raspberry and pomegranate. Notes of soft herbs and green spice weave through the fruit tones, buoyed by lively acidity that propels the flavors to a long, elegant finish.
JS 97
James Suckling
Beautiful dried strawberries, flowers and cedar with hints of tar. Full body, round and rich tannins with lots of cedar, tar and tobacco, as well as a hint of chocolate powder. Lovely, long and caressing finish. Gorgeous again. Better after 2022.
RP 96
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2016 Barbaresco Costa Russi is a very botanical wine in terms of its aromas, with lovely perfumes of rose, elderflower, sambuco and anise seed, along with a touch of glycerine. It then follows up with some sweetness that feels very embracing in this wine. This is the more ephemeral, delicate and floral member of the extended Barbaresco family from Gaja, with a crunchy tannic bite, but nothing too severe. There is a really good vitality and energy to this very expressive wine. Costa Russi remains the smallest of Gaja's single-vineyard wines, and Gaia Gaja warns that there will be considerably less of it starting with the 2017 vintage. Production for this wine had always varied greatly to begin with, due in part to the fragile nature of the 80-year-old vines, but about half of those were removed and replanted. It will be a while before the new vines are old enough to go online. So, with some 10,000 bottles made in 2016 and 6,000 bottles in 2015, we can count on those numbers to be split by half over the next three to four years, for sure.
Rating: 96+
WE 95
Wine Enthusiast
Dark-skinned berry, coconut and balsamic aromas of eucalyptus shape the nose along with a whiff of rose petal. On the tense, youthfully austere palate, taut, fine-grained tannins and vibrant acidity support red cherry, cranberry, orange zest, brown pepper and a hint of tobacco. Give it time to fully develop. Drink 2024–2041.
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Gaja

Gaja

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Gaja, Italy
Gaja Sperss Vineyard Winery Image

Perched atop a steep hill in the Langhe sits the small village of Barbaresco, home of the GAJA winery. The story of the GAJA Winery can be traced to a singular, founding purpose: to produce original wines with a sense of place which reflect the tradition and culture of those who made it. This philosophy has inspired five generations of impeccable winemaking. It started over 150 years ago when Giovanni Gaja opened a small restaurant in Barbaresco, making wine to complement the food he served. In 1859, he founded the Gaja Winery, producing some of the first wine from Piedmont to be bottled and sold outside the region. Since that time, the winery has been shaped by each generation’s hand, notably that of Clotilde Rey, Angelo Gaja’s grandmother. Her passion for uncompromising quality influenced and informed Angelo Gaja. Through Angelo, these values have become the cornerstone of the GAJA philosophy and are engrained in every aspect of wine production

 In 1961, Angelo Gaja began his mission of bringing this great winery to an even higher level. He was the first to use barriques, 225-liter French oak barrels. Under his direction, GAJA pioneered the production of single-vineyard designated wines and was the first to plant Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc varietals in Piedmont. He was also instrumental in elevating the native Nebbiolo grape to world-class esteem.

 Angelo Gaja is joined by the fifth generation of the GAJA family – his daughters Gaia and Rossana and his son Giovanni. Together they continue to advance the winery’s legacy. To fully realize their vision, all GAJA wines are produced exclusively from grapes grown in estate-owned vineyards, including 250 acres in Piedmont’s Barbaresco and Barolo districts as well as estates in Pieve Santa Restituta (Montalcino) and Ca’Marcanda (Bolgheri). It is from these storied vineyards, and their terroir – the combination of soil, weather and vines that grow upon them, that GAJA wines reveal their true heart and soul.

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Barbaresco

Piedmont, Italy

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A wine that most perfectly conveys the spirit and essence of its place, Barbaresco is true reflection of terroir. Its star grape, like that in the neighboring Barolo region, is Nebbiolo. Four townships within the Barbaresco zone can produce Barbaresco: the actual village of Barbaresco, as well as Neive, Treiso and San Rocco Seno d'Elvio.

Broadly speaking there are more similarities in the soils of Barbaresco and Barolo than there are differences. Barbaresco’s soils are approximately of the same two major soil types as Barolo: blue-grey marl of the Tortonion epoch, producing more fragile and aromatic characteristics, and Helvetian white yellow marl, which produces wines with more structure and tannins.

Nebbiolo ripens earlier in Barbaresco than in Barolo, primarily due to the vineyards’ proximity to the Tanaro River and lower elevations. While the wines here are still powerful, Barbaresco expresses a more feminine side of Nebbiolo, often with softer tannins, delicate fruit and an elegant perfume. Typical in a well-made Barbaresco are expressions of rose petal, cherry, strawberry, violets, smoke and spice. These wines need a few years before they reach their peak, the best of which need over a decade or longer. Bottle aging adds more savory characteristics, such as earth, iron and dried fruit.

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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 Piedmontese villages of Barolo, Barbaresco and Roero. Outside of Italy, growers are still very much in the experimentation stage but some success has been achieved in parts of California. Somm Secret—If you’re new to Nebbiolo, start with a charming, wallet-friendly, early-drinking Langhe Nebbiolo or Nebbiolo d'Alba.

RPT45260414_2016 Item# 608970

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