Barolo is a red Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG) wine produced in the northern Italian region of Piedmont. It is made from the Nebbiologrape and is often described as one of Italy’s greatest wines.[1] The zone of production extends into the communes of Barolo, Castiglione Falletto, Serralunga d’Alba and parts of the communes of Cherasco, Diano d’Alba, Grinzane Cavour, La Morra, Monforte d’Alba, Novello, Roddi, Verduno, all in the province of Cuneo, south-west of Alba. Although production codes have always stipulated that vineyards must be located on hillsides, the most recent revision of the production code released in 2010 goes further, categorically excluding valley floors, humid and flat areas, areas without sufficient sunlight, and areas with full-on northern exposures. Barolo is often described as having the aromas of tar and roses, and the wines are noted for their ability to age and usually take on a rust red tinge as they mature. Barolo needs to be aged for at least 38 months after the harvest before release, of which at least 18 months must be in wood. When subjected to aging of at least five years before release, the wine can be labeled a Riserva.
In the past, Barolo wines tended to be rich in tannin. It could take more than 10 years for the wine to soften and become ready for drinking. Fermenting wine sat on the grape skins for at least three weeks extracting huge amounts of tannins and was then aged in large, wooden casks for years. In order to appeal to more modern international tastes, those that prefer fruitier, earlier drinking wine styles, several producers began to cut fermentation times to a maximum of ten days and age the wine in new French oak barriques (small barrels). “Traditionalists” have argued that the wines produced in this way are not recognizable as Barolo and taste more of new oak than of wine.
Some Great BAROLO Producers
Bruno Giacos, Giaccamo Conterno, Francesco Rinaldi, 
Aldo Conterno, Giuseppe Mascarello
Barolo is one of the hottest wine collectibles today. But Italian laws and classifications can make navigating the landscape a tar pit for the collector who simply wants to get in, find the best of these great Italian wines, and get out. Unlike Burgundy, which has official categorizations for vineyards and the Médoc, which ranks its estates, Italy’s Piedmont region has no official hierarchy of the great Barolo vineyards.
It was Renato Ratti who first put his imprimatur on a map ranking the top “prima” categories in the 1970s. Ratti’s map was inspired by an unofficial Barolo classification written by Francesco Arrigoni and Elio Ghisalberti for Luigi Veronelli’s book “The Wines of Italy”. His became the map everyone hung in their winery or office. And while Ratti was a visionary, winemaking practices, vineyard management and global climate have changed since his day.
Two of my Favorite of ALL BAROLO VINTAGES -1989 and 1996
from one of my Favorite producers BARTOLO MASCARELLO
The Town of Barolo in the Piedmont Hills




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Paolo Scavino Barolo
Rocche Dell Annunziata 1990

There was another great winemaker dinner at La Pizza Fresca in New York last night.     La Pizza Fresca is located on 13 East 20th Street in New York ‘s Gramercy Park .. The place has quite a uniqueness about it .. It’s a restaurant that’s makes some of the best Pizza in all of New York .. Or is it a Pizzeria? Well let’s just say it’s a Pizzeria / Restaurant, OK? Yes that’s what it is. And the Pizza, this restaurant is one of the few that’s certified as Vera Pizza Npolteana which is an organization that grades and certifies Pizzerias that meet the high standards of the best porperly made Naapoletan Pizza. La Pizza Fresca is one of only 1,000 Pizzerias in the world to be Vera Pizza Napoletan certified, nad just 1 of 100 in the United States ..


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Well, anyway la Pizza Fresca makes some great Pizza. They also have a full menu of Antipasti, Pasta, Meat, Fish, and Poultry and they have one great wine list. Besides the great Pizza, La Pizza Fesca is realy into wine, and is in fact one of the top Italian Wine focused restaurants in New York. They have a great wine list that is very extensive and world class. And like they did last night that have many great wine dinners each year.

The wine dinner I attended this night was hosted by Elisa Scavino who is one of Enrico Scavino ‘s two daughters working with him in the family wine business in Peidmont. Well the dinner was awesome, we started with Beef Carpacio, followed by some awesome Pizza, Pizza Funghi (Mushrooms) and Pizza Bianco with Fontina Cheese, Black truffles, and Prosciutto. The Pizza was amazing. We drank Paolo Scavino Barbera and Nebbiolo Langhe with the Carpacio, and ewere quite fortunate to have a couple of Paolo Scavino ‘s fabulous Barolo with the Pizza .. Yes, with the Pizza we drank Scavino’s Barolo Carobric 2000 . This wine was phenominal. It was in perfect balance, full of great fruit and earthy flavors of Truffle and Mushrooms. You couldn’t ask more from a great Barolo from one of the great Barolo vintages of all-time in the 2000 .. Lucky we were at the dinner to follow this great Barolo with Scavino’s Barolo Bric del Fiasc 1998, 2000, and 2010 . Needless to say, they were all great, and drinking quite nicely. 


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We were then treated to an amaing line-up of an amazing 3 Vintage Vertical Tatsing of Paolo Scavino ‘s Barolo Reserva Rocche dell’ Annunziata. The vintages we had were 3 of the greatest Barolo vintages of all-time in the 1990, 2000, and 2001 … Wow what a treat?

It was a great night of socializing, drinking great Barolo accompanied with the awesome Pizza, Pasta, and Bue al Barolo (Beef Briased in Barolo Wine) and our gracious host Alisa Scavino talking about all the great winew we were drinking and of the histroy of the family’s winery founded by her grandfather Lorenzo Scavino . Bravo Elisa !!!!

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Alisa Scavino with Author Daniel Bellino-Zwicke
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The Scavino Family

Paolo Scavino is an historical winery in the Barolo region. It was founded in 1921 in Castiglione Falletto from Lorenzo Scavino and his son Paolo. Farming has always been a family tradition and passion.

Enrico Scavino together with the daughters Enrica and Elisa, fourth generation, run the family Estate. He started to work full time in the winery in 1951 when he was 10 years old. A young winemaker who inherited the passion and devotion for the land he belongs to. Through over 60 years of experience his focus has been to invest on important cru of Nebbiolo to show the uniqueness of each terroir.

Their work is inspired by the love and respect they have for their territory and they pursue purity of expression, complexity and elegance for their wines from the three local grapes Dolcetto, Barbera and Nebbiolo.

These values and culture have been carried on and never changed.

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Drank some awesome Barolo the other night. We popped a bottle of Contratto Barolo “Secolo” 1990 from the famed Cerequio Vineyard the other night. The wine was, as they say “Off The Chain” Incrediable, and everything you expect in a great Barolo, from a stellar vintage, aged properly for 20 years. This Boys and Girls is how great Barolos are meant to be drunk, “Old.” Yes, Barolo, made of 100% Nebbiolo from the best grapes, grown on the best sights are meant to drink with some age on them. The wine was textbook Barolo, smelling and tasting of Violets, Tar, and Alcohol Soaked Bing Cherries. “Yumm” is all I can say. Why pontificate with overrun adjectives and descriptions of taste and aromas, all marvelously delicious to say the least. On a 100 point scale, this wine easily rates a 98, so all you need to know is that it was delicious, just about perfect and rates a 98. Nuff said.
I first tasted this wine at a luncheon with Vineyard owner Antonella Boccino way back in 1997. The wine was of course more zippy and youthful back in 97. And now 15 years later it has now been aged into utter perfection. If you have or could possibly find a bottle, and you drink one, it will be without a doubt one of your life’s great wine drinking experiences.







by Daniel Bellino Zwicke