2004 Barolo Cascina Francia Giacomo Conterno



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£180.00

Average critic rating : 97.0 points

97

97

The 2004 Barolo Cascina Francia is an explosive wine that faithfully captures all of the promise it showed from barrel. This spectacularly rich, concentrated Barolo possesses striking perfume in its smoke, tar, spiced red fruits, licorice and flowers. The wine offers tremendous length and a finish that lasts forever. This is an especially dense, powerful Cascina Francia with a gorgeous core of perfumed sweet fruit that will require some time to fully emerge but is breathtakingly beautiful even at this early stage. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2029. ||The biggest news at Giacomo Conterno over the last few months has been the estate’s recently completed acquisition of three hectares in the Cerretta vineyard in Serralunga. This is a significant development considering the winery’s history. Few estates in Italy are so closely identified with one piece of land as Giacomo Conterno. When Conterno purchased the Cascina Francia vineyard (a monopole) in 1974 it was a wheat field, although vines had been planted there in the past. There are no known pre-Conterno wines from Cascina Francia. Once the estate began making wines from Cascina Francia (first vintage 1978) they focused all of their attention on that vineyard and ceased using purchased fruit. Given all of the change in Piedmont over the last thirty-plus years it is hard to believe, but Conterno never acquired another parcel - until now. There are two hectares of Nebbiolo and one of Barbera which will become new, separate bottlings. Roberto Conterno told me it will be two to three years before the vineyard responds to the work he is doing today. Unfortunately 2008 has been a challenging growing season characterized by abundant rain in the spring and summer, along with hail, which damaged a portion of the fruit, so total production from Cerretta is expected to be small. Still, it will be fascinating to see what Conterno comes up with from their new vineyards in Cerretta. As for the new releases, they are drop-dead gorgeous. While some of these wines are increasingly difficult to afford, at the end of the day it is hard to begrudge the commercial success of one of Italy’s historic estates, which in many ways, has been a long time coming. The late Giovanni Conterno and his wife Yvonne made enormous sacrifices over the years. In 1974 they paid a princely sum for their Cascina Francia vineyard, then in the early 1980s they built their current winemaking facility, all while putting five children through school. Today Roberto Conterno makes wines that can hold their own with the very finest wines made anywhere in the world, and in that context theses Barolos remain fairly priced. This is an estate that has achieved its success the hard way, by earning it - not just over the years, but over the decades. Wine Advocate.October, 2008

97

97

The 2004 Barolo Cascina Francia is an explosive wine that faithfully captures all of the promise it showed from barrel. This spectacularly rich, concentrated Barolo possesses striking perfume in its smoke, tar, spiced red fruits, licorice and flowers. The wine offers tremendous length and a finish that lasts forever. This is an especially dense, powerful Cascina Francia with a gorgeous core of perfumed sweet fruit that will require some time to fully emerge but is breathtakingly beautiful even at this early stage. Drink: 2012-2029

GIACOMO CONTERNO

For any wine collector, Giacomo Conterno is a name that makes you sit up straight and pay attention. Widely acknowledged as the most majestic examples of traditional Barolo, these wines are some of the most thought provoking heavy-hitters known to the wine world. Power, massive structure, richness tempered with delicacy and the ability to age beautifully for 30+ years are just some of the reasons for Conterno’s world-class reputation.


A NEW DIRECTION

The winery, established in 1908, initially conformed to the way other producers in the region made Barolo; in cask or demijohn suitable for early consumption. In the 1920s Giacomo Conterno set his sights on making a higher quality Barolo that could age for decades. He started by extending maceration periods extensively and began aging his wines in large wooden botti. The shift in quality kept the winery afloat during difficult economic times and eventually led to the ability to purchase the Cascina Francia vineyard in the 1970s.


CASCINA FRANCIA

Cascina Francia is one of Piedmont’s greatest sites and the exclusive source of Conterno’s Baroli – Monfortino and Cascina Francia. The densely planted 14 hectare site boasts southwest exposure and sits 4,000 metres above sea level, offering ideal conditions for deep tannins and big, ripe acidity. This vineyard is the key in producing Conterno’s powerful, age-worthy style of Barolo.


BAROLO MONFORTINO RISERVA

In great vintages, Barolo Monfortino Riserva is made from a selection of the best fruit. It is vinified differently than Cascina Francia, first undergoing an uncontrolled fermentation at a high temperature, followed by an additional three years of maturation in cask. Antonio Galloni remarks “Baroli Cascina Francia and Monfortino... rightly considered by most observers as among the most profound wines in the world.”


FAMILY BUSINESS

Today, the winery is run by Roberto Conterno, who benefits from the wisdom and legacy of his late father, Giovanni, and grandfather, Giacomo. The winemaking is still rigorously traditional with long fermentations followed by periods of 7+ years in cask, practices reminiscent of other great Italian producers Gianfranco Soldera and Giuseppe Quintarelli. This powerful style of Barolo continues to shock and amaze those lucky enough to open them.


FINE & RARE

Made in tiny quantities of only around 1,000 cases per year, this is a hugely desirable and collectable wine with a rarity factor similar to Petrus in Bordeaux and Domaine Romanée Conti in Burgundy. Highly rated by Antonio Galloni, the vintages 2010, 2004, 1999, 1978 and 1970 are among some of the most sought after wines in the world.

 



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