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The Gavarini Chiniera vineyard is shaped like an amphitheater with thick forests at the back (which protects from cold air currents) and sandy chalk soil at 380 meters in elevation. This is a special site, and the Elio Grasso 2018 Barolo Gavarini Chiniera is always one of Grasso’s most easily recognized wines. This vintage is exceptionally bright and vibrant with lifted tones of cherry, plum, blue flower and sweet blood orange. Those primary notes are framed by sensations of dusty white mineral. This mid-weight wine exhibits the deep elegance that was achieved in this vintage. Production is 12,000 bottles.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96 RPDried-cherry, strawberry and tar aromas follow through to a full body with intense, chewy tannins that frame the wine nicely. Flavorful finish. Juicy. Not a big wine, but shows structure and class for the vintage. Try after 2026.James Suckling | 95 JSA bright, cherry-laced red, with a fruity core framed by tobacco, earth, eucalyptus and iron flavors. Firm and dense on the finish, yet this remains elegant and vibrant through the lingering aftertaste. Best from 2025 through 2042. 1,000 cases made, 50 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 93 WSThe 2018 Barolo Gavarini Chiniera has shut down massively since I tasted it last year, which is probably a very good thing for its medium and longer term prospects. Time in the glass releases some of its inner sweetness, but this classically austere, young Barolo is going to need time. I would not dream of touching a bottle anytime soon.Vinous Media | 91 VM
The 2019 Barolo Gavarini Chiniera is just superb, with layers of pure fruits and spices interwoven with vibrant cherry liqueur, candied roses, incense, and baking spice. Harmonious and balanced from the start, it offers ripe tannins, a seamless spine of fresh acidity, and fantastic length that leaves me wanting more. As it opens, it reveals more nuanced notes of apricot and saline earth. An outstanding medium to full-bodied red, this is one to cellar for a few years, as it has a ways to go before its full spectrum is revealed. Drink 2026-2050.Jeb Dunnuck | 98 JDWith vines adjacent to forests on white chalky soils, the Elio Grasso 2019 Barolo Gavarini Chiniera is a luminous and very beautiful wine. Vintner Gianluca Grasso called this "the helicopter vintage" because he actually rented a helicopter to fly over the vines for 45 minutes to dry them from rain right before harvest. As he tells it, this was a costly but good decision because 15 minutes after he finished harvesting on October 26, heavy rain came and lasted an entire week. Thanks to these dramatic measures, the grape skins were excellent, and maceration with submerged cap lasted 55 days. That’s how perfect the skins were. This balanced wine shows extreme precision and elegance.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RPThe 2019 Barolo Gavarini Chiniera is classically austere and just gorgeous right out of the gate. Soaring aromatics and fine, sculpted fruit race out of the glass. Crushed rose petal, cinnamon, orange peel and mint are all beautifully delineated. Readers will have to be patient, as the 2019 is going to need years to be at its best, yet it has that embryonic inner sweetness that characterizes the very finest wines here. Superb.Vinous Media | 96 VMPerfumes of cinnamon, plums and dried flowers follow through to a medium body, with fine tannins that run the length of the wine. Hints of cedar and sandalwood. Crunchy and lightly chewy. Give this four or five years to soften. Best after 2028.James Suckling | 94 JS
Very different from the Gavarini Chiniera, the 2019 Barolo Ginestra Casa Maté shows more bite, structure and a bigger tannic impact. Fruit was harvested a bit earlier, but healthy grape skins allowed for 52 days of maceration. This wine shows beautiful intensity and fullness with dark fruit, earth, hazelnut and dark plum. Surrounded by forests, the greenery gives balance to this wine by moderating temperatures. In fact, this site saw up to 10 degrees Celsius drops in diurnal temperatures, leading to thick skins and ideal phenolic ripeness.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97+ RPAnother remarkable wine from this outstanding and tension-packed vintage, the 2019 Barolo Ginestra Casa Mate takes on a bit more introspective nature, with black cherry, cracked peppercorn, licorice, and wet asphalt. Full-bodied, it offers sweet tannins and notes of balsamic herbs, violets, leather, and black raspberry that move through the palate at a glacial pace without feeling weighted. I would recommend cellaring for a few years, after which it will be perfect for winter weather evenings by the fireside over the coming decades. Drink 2026-2050.Jeb Dunnuck | 97 JDThe 2019 Barolo Ginestra Casa Matè is rich, dark and explosive. Dark-fleshed fruit, cloves menthol, licorice, scorched earth, leather and dried flowers are some of the notes that infuse the 2019 with character. Deep and resonant, with tremendous depth, the Ginestra is a wine of unbridled intensity. Swaths of tannin wrap around the huge, substantial finish. This virile, strapping Barolo is quite simply classic Ginestra.Vinous Media | 95 VMPlum and orange peel with some flowers such as violets on the nose. Medium to full body with tannins that build on the palate. Chewy and powerful. Traditional sensibility and nature to this. Try this after 2027.James Suckling | 95 JS
Delicious and so enjoyable, this juicy, full-bodied red is one of the best Dolcetto’s out there, doling out flavors of ripe black cherry, black raspberry and white pepper. Taut tannins and fresh acidity keep it balanced. Drink through 2025. Abv: 14.5% Kerin O’Keefe | 93 KO
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