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M. Marengo Barolo Bricco delle Viole 2013

Nebbiolo from Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
  • RP95
  • JS93
0% ABV
  • JS96
  • WS94
  • RP92
  • JS93
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Winemaker Notes

Ruby red with orange reflections. Very fine, ethereal, and rich on the nose, with notes of cherry and sweet spices. Elegant, full bodied, quite soft, fresh, balanced, sweet and well integrated tannins, persistent.

Great with grilled red meat or seasoned cheeses.

Critical Acclaim

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RP 95
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2013 Barolo Bricco delle Viole is a delicious expression from a lesser-known vineyard that is declared by only three producers including Marco Marengo. This estate produces 5,500 bottles from one hectare of vines. Like Marco's other Barolo wines, this one is fermented with ambient yeasts and undergoes malolactic fermentation in small oak barrel. The wine is aged in new (only 20%) and neutral oak for two years before release. This expression shows excellent depth and generosity with lively fruit flavors that wrap thickly over the palate. This is a complete and centered expression that makes a loud and positive impact, but ultimately follows through with extreme elegance and grace.
JS 93
James Suckling
Beautiful perfumes of roses, berries and hot stones. Full body, silky tannins and plenty of fruit and spices on the finish — yet this is always understated. Needs three or four years to open. Try in 2021.
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M. Marengo

M. Marengo

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M. Marengo, Barolo, Piedmont, Italy
Marengo is one of the smallest estates in La Morra, but Marco Marengo has no inferiority complex. Marengo is privileged to be among the many more famous names who own vineyards in the “Brunate” cru, an immaculately positioned parcel of land that is considered to be one of the grand crus of the Langhe. The estate makes tiny quantities of modern-style Barolo from old vines in their tiny cellar on La Morra’s main street; in great years, these particularly well-balanced, ample, intense, tannic wines hint at truffles; they are perfectly rich and complete Baroli. 1999 is the third release of the Barolo "Bricco Viole", from a tiny cru in the Barolo township named for the violets that bloom there in springtime; the 1998 was rated 92 pts by the Wine Spectator. Elio Altare once told Marco that Marengo's vineyards were the "finest he had ever seen!" The slopes around Brunate are also particularly noted for superb Dolcetto

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 hilltops, is one full of history and romance of 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.

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 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.

EWLITMARBBV13_2013 Item# 224961