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Barbaresco Sori Paitin, Paitin 2013

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This is a splendid full-flavoured Barbaresco. Discover succulent freshness of fruit that will grow in bottle to deliver a beautifully multifaceted, fragrant and seductive wine. This will be a perfect match to a Christmas turkey.
Price: £45.00 Bottle
Price: £540.00 Case of 12
In Stock
Code: IT21081

Wine characteristics

  • Red Wine
  • Full-bodied
  • Nebbiolo
  • 75cl
  • Now to 2025
  • 14% Alcohol
  • oak used but not v. noticeable
  • Cork, natural

North West Italy

The most renowned of the north western wine regions of Italy is Piemonte, and it is arguable that it is the most renowned of all Italy's wine producing regions. Home to Barolo and Barbaresco, both made solely from the nebbiolo grape that performs particularly well on the slopes around the town of Alba, Piemonte produces some of the most famous, and increasingly sought after, wines in the World. These are wines that manage to harmonise power and finesse, harnessing the abundant tannins of nebbiolo to richness and concentration but, in good examples, never tipping over into heaviness. They have all the components necessary to make wines that can age for many years and achieve a silky elegance that reminds many of the finest Burgundies. The climate is largely continental with a little influence from the Mediterranean over the hills helping to maintain the long, warm autumns that nebbiolo needs to reach full ripeness on the limestone, clay and sandy soils not far from the Alps to the...

The most renowned of the north western wine regions of Italy is Piemonte, and it is arguable that it is the most renowned of all Italy's wine producing regions. Home to Barolo and Barbaresco, both made solely from the nebbiolo grape that performs particularly well on the slopes around the town of Alba, Piemonte produces some of the most famous, and increasingly sought after, wines in the World. These are wines that manage to harmonise power and finesse, harnessing the abundant tannins of nebbiolo to richness and concentration but, in good examples, never tipping over into heaviness. They have all the components necessary to make wines that can age for many years and achieve a silky elegance that reminds many of the finest Burgundies. The climate is largely continental with a little influence from the Mediterranean over the hills helping to maintain the long, warm autumns that nebbiolo needs to reach full ripeness on the limestone, clay and sandy soils not far from the Alps to the north.

Besides nebbiolo the Piemontese also make wines from varieties that give them something to drink while the Barolos and Barbarescos mature gracefully in vat and bottle. Dolcetto (little sweet one in Italian) and barbera are the principal varieties, best known for producing fruity, lively reds to match the foods of the region but which are also now being taken more seriously and given the treatment that can turn them into something far more refined and structured through lower yields, better sites and oak ageing. Beside them growers persist with the lesser known but just as fascinating freisa, rouchet, grignolino, brachetto, pelaverga, bonarda, croatina and vespolina, and the white varieties cortese and arneis. Lastly, but these days not necessarily least, Moscato d'Asti and Brachetto d'Acqui are two wines that, when made well, can be a delight - frothy, sweet and fragrant bubblies of low alcohol and gentle fizz for enjoying with a range of desserts when lightness of touch is called for or for drinking in the garden on a warm Summers' evening.

North of Piemonte is the Valle d'Aosta, the smallest wine region in Italy squeezed into a valley abutting the Alps almost in the shadow of Mont Blanc and reaching out to the French border. Here, on steep Alpine slopes, varieties like petite rouge, fumin, malvoisie and petite arvine sit alongside a few plantings of chardonnay and make characterful wines with a mountain freshness that goes delightfully with the local cuisine. Slightly to the east a scramble of small appellations such as Gattinara, Ghemme and Lessona produce perfumed and fine boned variations on nebbiolo, here known as spanna and sometimes blended with other local varieties, that were once more famous than Barolo.

In the north-east of the region on the border with Switzerland Valtellina Superiore also majors in nebbiolo of excellence, this time within the region of Lombardy. Head south from Valtellina Superiore to the hills around Lago d'Iseo and the méthode traditionelle sparkling wines of Franciacorta are made from pinot noir, chardonnay and pinot bianco grapes. Throughout Lombardy still wines are made from an assortment of varieties in several different appellations without any making a stand as the focal point of regional production. Perhaps the closest to achieving such recognition, besides the increasingly well-known Franciacorta, is Lugana just south of Lake Garda where turbiano (aka verdicchio) can produce some excellent, fragrant whites on a flat glacial plain where the lake acts as a moderator of temperatures, cooling the air with its breezes.

Liguria, famed more for its picturesque and exclusive Riviera resorts than its wines, runs in a strip from the French frontier to the border with Tuscany. Vineyards are small and fragmented due to the rugged terrain as the Ligurian Appenines finally curl and dip towards the sea and because of this Liguria's production is tiny, if interesting. Vermentino, rossese, sangiovese and dolcetto are all grown but the most famous wine, oft seen by the tourists who consume most of it, is Cinque Terre made from bosco with either vermentino or albarola blended in.

Finally, the wines of Colli Piacentini, Oltrepo Pavese and Gutturnio close to the city of Piacenza on the edge of the Emilia-Romagna, if chosen carefully, can provide much pleasure with wines made from barbera, bonarda and a number of international varieties. However, much of the crop and the wines made here are destined for spumante producers or blenders based elsewhere.

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Paitin

This is a famous Barbaresco estate now run by Giovanni and Silvano Pasquero Elia. The winery sits on the Bricco di Neive with a magnificent view over the vines below. For a time we felt the wines were geared to the American market, using a rotofermenter and plenty of oak but they are now right back on form showing the natural quality of the exceptional fruit.

The Paitin estate began to take shape in 1796, when William Pitt the Younger was Prime Minister of Britain and Napoleon was marching a Revolutionary army into northern Italy. In the same year Benedetto Elia purchased a farm with a wine cellar and so began the story of this historic estate. His son expanded the vineyards and his grandson renovated the winery and began bottling Barbaresco Sori Paitin himself in 1893.

In 1965 Secondo Pasquero-Elia revitalised the estate once more by building a new winery and initiating a replanting programme, introducing new clonal stock while expanding the vineyard area. Sadly he died in 2019 but his sons Giovanni and Silvano have picked up the baton with great aplomb.

They grow native varieties nebbiolo, dolcetto, barbera and arneis on their 17 hectares. Their finest wines are centred on the 4.5-hectare Paitin vineyard at Serra Boella, a south-west facing vineyard at 320 metres altitude on the Bricco di Neive. Sustainable, ecologically minded farming, low yields, 40 year-old vines and a superb terroir all add up to excellence.

Italy Vintage 2013

Northern Italy performed very well in a vintage that was difficult for many other areas. In Piedmont the cooler temperatures led to a long, slow ripening period that accumulated flavour and fragrance in the fruit. Clear, dry weather at harvest was very welcome and led to the harvesting of high-quality fruit. The expectation is for wines of depth, concentration and aromatic intensity that will keep. In Tuscany too growers enjoyed a long, slow maturation period after cool spring weather and a nippy August. Ripe and balanced wines that should age gracefully are the result.

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