Wine Review: Villa Penna Barolo 2013

villa pennaBarolo can be a real sorehead when young—ungenerous, stubborn, and severe. This one has more youthful charm and is a great value for the price.

From grapes grown in La Morra, it’s on the lighter side, floral, with dried cherry and strawberry jam, a bit of orange zest and, on day two, redolent, earthy truffles. The aromatic emergence on day 2 was remarkable.

The palate blooms coldly opening with angular, stony mineral notes motoring into a shapely, medium weight midpalate of cherry and dusty earth before launching the finish of persistent but powdery tannins, firm enough to reign in the acidity but under control with a gentle grip. A deft job on the tannins, the wine is ready to drink now but will age nicely.

Detached and cerebral, it shows linear development with muted peaks and valleys, the rough, spare elegance of Cobain’s Come as You Are a worthy match.

Technical Notes and story: Winemaker Teresio Batista is the grandson of Villa Penna’s founder. This wine spends three years in large, Slavonian oak barrels, 6 months in the bottle.

Score: 91

Price: $57 (Available at DOCG Imports)

Alc: 14%

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