When we attended Vin Italy in 2012, one of our absolute favorite estates to taste and discover was Paolo Conterno, founded in 1886. The family members we met were proud of never having used a single barrique (small barrel) at the winery. This is quite an impressive feat, since the majority of their neighbors have either tried, then abandoned the method and gone back to traditional large barrel aging, or they have switched to barrique, giving a more modern style of Baroli. The Conterno clan is steadfastly part of the traditional way of thinking and producing wine. They are known for owning spectacular sites in Barolo and expressing these sites' terroir's in their wines. Here we have a wine they call Riva del Bric, which is made from younger vines of the outstanding cru Ginestra, typically from 15-25 years of age. We tasted the 2013 with Giorgio Conterno here on a cold January morning, and found deep fruits, wonderful salinity and wonderful perfume. Our notes indicated, 'you know this is Ginestra...' meaning the complexity and depth of the cru is evident.
Wine SpectatorA muscular style, but not rustic, offering cherry, leather, eucalyptus and cigar box aromas and flavors. Balanced and expressive, with a fluid profile punctuated by dusty, well-integrated tannins. Best from 2022 through 2038. 1,500 cases made.
James SucklingAromas of ripe berries and hints of chocolate. Cedar undertones. Medium body, a refined and silky textured, beautiful and ripe fruit and sublime freshness. Drink or hold.