Ca del Baio Barbaresco Vallegrande 2020
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The best quality-to-price in all of Barbaresco? We think so. The 2020 is utterly dynamite, demonstrating the strength of the vintage in the cellar of one of our favorite wineries. Wonderful Nebbiolo aromatics, a feel of rich and silky elegance but wait...there's power and structure lying beneath. This can be decanted an enjoyed with dinner (that's what we did!) or aged well beyond a decade. An outstanding vintage for Vallegrande, the home site of Ca del Baio. -Marcus
94 points Vinous, Antonio Galloni: "A classy, elegant wine. Dark cherry, spice, leather, tobacco, incense, rose petal and gravel are all finely cut. Deceptive in its mid-weight structure, the 2020 packs quite a punch. Power and finesse come together here in grand style. Spice, menthold, melted road tar and licorice linger on the ample, imposing finish."
2015 vintage notes
94 points Wine Spectator: "This red combines beautiful cherry, strawberry and floral aromas and flavors with a firm, dense structure in an aerial style, with fleeting accents of tar, mineral and underbrush leading to a racy finish. Best from 2022 through 2040."
2012 vintage notes
94 points Wine Advocate: "The Ca’ del Baio line-up is extremely impressive and delightful. These are some of the best wines from Barbaresco. The 2010 Barbaresco Valgrande delivers a heightened sense of elegance and feminine restraint. The bouquet is redolent of cola, tar, blue flower, rosehip with faint hints of exotic spice. The tight grip of the tannins – firm without being astringent – gives this wine the attributes needed for longer cellar time. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2026."
2008 vintage notes
I've been waiting nearly two years for this wine to arrive in Oregon, since my last trip to Barbaresco. One scent and I'm instantly transported there. Red cherry, dried rose, a melange of brown spices, licorice, subtle mint - you can smell this all day. This finish persists with a succulent sweetness to the tannins. I've been drinking it with all kinds of food, a favorite being seared pork tenderloin. - Marcus
2004 vintage notes
The 2004 Valgrande embodies everything I love about Barbaresco. Complex aromas of spice, sweet fruit, leather, tar, and cedar with a gorgeously pure core of sappy cherry fruit with blueberry and plum accents. Plush fruit shows on the entry, with excellent grip on the lingering finish. This is truly an "utterly tempting" Barbaresco that can be enjoyed upon release (we've gone through a six pack at home already!) although it is built to age for more than a decade. - Marcus
The 2004 Valgrande received a Three Glasses (Tre Bicchieri) rating from Gambero Rosso 2008 Guide to Italian Wines. The signifiance of the Three Glasses rating cannot be overstated; the selection process is rigorous. From nearly 25,000 wines, just 1500 are selected for the Three Glasses taste offs. All tastings are blind. Only 305 of the 25,000 wines were given the Three Glasses rating, of which the Ca del Baio was one.
Gambero Rosso writes: "The 2004 vintage saw (winegrower) Giulio produce three superlative selections, each with its owen well-defined personality... Three Glasses went to Ca' del Baio for an utterly tempting, admirably distinctive Barbaresco destined for significant evolution."