1988 Barolo Riserva Monfortino—Burnished dense ruby. The 1988 offers classic evolved aromas of spices, chocolate, animal, and beef broth. Structured and complex on the palate, with sensations of dark fruits, stewed prunes and a balsamic character which suggest this wine is at or close to maturity. Finishes with great length and class. 94 points/drink now-?, tasted 05/05 Conterno makes two Barolos both from the Cascina Francia vineyard, one of the great monopole sites in Piedmont. The vineyard was purchased by Giovanni Conterno in 1974 and measures six hectares. Cascina Francia is made in a traditional style, with natural yeasts and temperature-controlled fermentation and maceration lasting 3-4 weeks. The wines are aged in large Slavonian oak casks and are bottled in the summer of the fourth year following the harvest. In great vintages a special selection of the best fruit is made in the vineyard and that fruit becomes the Barolo Riserva Monfortino, perhaps the single most iconic wine in all of Piedmont. Monfortino is also made with natural yeasts, although fermentation/maceration time is longer, lasting 4-5 weeks, and is carried out without the aid of temperature control. Current vintages are aged seven years in cask, but past vintages have seen as much as 10 years of cask aging before being released. Monfortino is legendary for its extraordinary longevity, which is usually measured in decades. Antonio Galloni, In the Cellar # G3,4.
The Wine Advocate Score: 94/100
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