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Average critic rating : 95.0 points
The 2005 Barolo Pajana is off the charts. This deeply scented, layered Barolo possesses a striking bouquet of spices, tobacco, graphite, dark cherries and new leather that come together in a breathtaking display of elegance and power that is hard to fully capture in words. The tannins are, as usual, quite broad but they are also remarkably fine. In 2005 the Pajana shows breathtaking balance and harmony with a long, sensual finish. This is a superb effort from Domenico Clerico, and his team led by the mega-talented Massimo Conterno. Anticipated maturity: 2015-2025. ||Domenico Clerico’s 2005 Barolos are among the handful of wines in this vintage that reveal the three-dimensional qualities that make Barolo such a seductive wine. Unfortunately there is no Percristina, as the vintage that would have been released is the 2002, in which Clerico did not produce his single-vineyard Barolos. In August 2008 I spent a morning driving around Clerico’s vineyards in the Ginestra zone of Monforte, which is the source of his Pajana and Ciabot Mentin Ginestra Barolos. It is impossible to fully appreciate the backbreaking effort that is required to manually work these steep vineyards without setting foot in the vines themselves. The site of green-harvested fruit strewn across the ground was a testament to Clerico’s dedication to low yields. In recent years Clerico has gradually lengthened maceration times and lowered the use of new oak, both of which are allowing for the purity of that fruit to come through with extraordinary detail.||A Marc de Grazia Selection, various American importers, including Michael Skurnik, Syosset, NY; tel. (516) 677-9300, Vin Divino, Chicago, IL; tel. (773) 334-6700, and Estate Wines, Ltd., San Rafael, CA; tel. (415) 492-9411 Wine Advocate.April, 2009
A Monforte estate founded in the late 1970s, the wines of Domenico Clerico have been famous almost from the start. This is Barrique Barolo’ and exceptionally well-executed to boot.
“I find a spirituality and character in these wines that puts them in a class with few peers.” Antonio Galloni
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