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M. Marengo Barolo Bricco delle Viole 2015

  • RP94
  • JS93
  • D91
750ML / 0% ABV
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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 94
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
In cooler vintages, the Bricco delle Viole site produces wines with strong floral aromatics that range from blue wildflowers to rose hip. However, the warmer-vintage 2015 Barolo Bricco delle Viole is a very different wine that breaks away from its predecessors. The quality of the aromas is darker, more saturated, and it veers toward black and purple fruit more than those characteristic floral tones. This is a more impactful Barolo with broad shoulders, depth and firmly integrated tannins. It walks with a heavier gait compared to past vintages, but it covers the palate beautifully. About 6,000 bottles were produced.
JS 93
James Suckling
Aromas of smoke, meat and dark berries follow through to a full body with rich, velvety tannins and a flavorful finish. Try in 2023.
D 91
Decanter
Marco Marengo is based in La Morra, but he also produces this fine wine from the village of Barolo. Marengo is an unrepentant modernist, but the barrique-ageing rarely leaves an oaky imprint on his wines.The red fruits on the nose are reticent, while the palate is beautifully balanced, marrying concentration of fruit, fine tannins and lifted elegance. Long and stylish.
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M. Marengo

M. Marengo

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M. Marengo, 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
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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.

EWL520288_2015 Item# 520288

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