Piemonte Rocche Costamagna
Not for nothing is Piedmont known as Italy’s answer to Burgundy: myriad small vineyards with tiny but important soil and microclimate differences lead to a wealth of different styles of Barolo and Barbaresco, all produced in tiny quantities by small, artisan producers. Alessandro Locatelli is one of them. His family has been on the land since 1841, but it was not until the mid-1980s that they began to make and market their own wines at Rocche Costamagna, a 14 hectare estate based in La Morra.
La Morra is one of the 11 comunes that make up the wine producing region of Barolo. It is arguably the most important of the 11, producing a third of all Barolo made. Barolo struggles with two very different profiles – the ultra-modern, toasty oak version where the fruit is overwhelmed by the oak, and the desperately old fashioned where the fruit is overwhelmed by too long a time spent in big old casks. There is a via di mezzo and this is Rocche Costamagna’s preferred route – emphasise the Nebbiolo, reduce the old wood, minimise the new. The result is a totally mouth-watering wine, with a beautiful balance between flavour and power, richly layered with tarry black fruits, spiced and delicious.
Alongside their Barolo, we also offer Rocche Costamagna's Barbera d'Alba (far more than just Barolo lite); their Dolcetto d'Alba ("so ridiculously tempting it should be required drinking" - reads Nicola's tasting notes on the 2017 vintage) and their Nebbiolo Langhe Roccardo DOC. Watch out for their single vineyard Barolo; Rocche Annunziata, which comes from one of the four cru status zones in La Morra, offered on release.