I am impressed. I have to say it. But I have tasted most of the top 2005 Barbarescos, and the wines are much better than I anticipated. I don’t see a lot of difference between 2004 and 2005. The two vintages produced aromatic and delicious Nebbiolos with lovely perfumes of ripe fruit and flowers and refined palates of strawberries, fine tannins and fresh acidity. Stick to the top names such as Bruno Giacosa, Bruno Rocca, Moccagatta, Angelo Gaja, Albino Rocca, and Sottimano. You won’t be disappointed. They are surprisingly attractive now but will be much better in three or four years, and onwards. Check out my video from the tasting room:
I don’t have the complete details as to why 2005 turned out better than anticipated. I did hear from Luca Currado of Vietti that he liked “2005 better than 2004 for Barbaresco.” Now, wine producers have a tendency to like what they have in their cellar that they haven’t sold. But he’s not full of BS usually and I think he may be right. In any case, I found that most of the well-known Barbaresco producers made wines that are very close or at the same level as 2004. Some made better wines.
On paper, it didn’t look that way. The 2005 vintage had a good amount of rain in the summer as well as during the harvest, so wine producers had to really know what to do with their vineyards and grapes. Otherwise, they could have made slightly diluted wines. Interestingly, the same could have been said for 2004, but not because of rain. Many of the vineyards in Barbaresco, as well as Barolo, overproduced grapes, so those who did not severely cut back bunches in July and August had masses of grapes and produced slightly diluted wines.
Dilution either way means slightly lighter, less-interesting wines. But the top producers in 2004 and 2005 knew how to make well-structured reds through fine tuning their yields, picking at the right time and fermenting and selecting properly in their cellars. However they did it, the 2004 and 2005 vintages are good news for Nebbiolo lovers. Check out my video.
Andrew J Walter — Sacramento,CA — May 22, 2008 5:12pm ET
Joseph A Miceli — New Olreans, Louisiana — May 22, 2008 9:55pm ET
Dr Samuel Goldman — Bedford, New Hampshire — May 23, 2008 10:24am ET
Ralph Michels — The Netherlands — May 23, 2008 11:39am ET
James Suckling — — May 23, 2008 12:23pm ET
Dan Liguori — West Palm Beach, Fl — May 23, 2008 6:17pm ET
Marco Laico — charlotte n.c — June 6, 2008 1:32pm ET
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