Pio Cesare Barolo Pio DOCG
October 31, 2023, Bruce Sanderson
“A savory version, displaying macerated cherry and currant fruit aligned with eucalyptus, rosemary and earth flavors. Dense and lively, ending with a solid grip of tannins. Fresh and on the austere side. Best from 2026 through 2042.”
The Wine Advocate
August 2023, Monica Larner
“Pio Cesare does a great job with its classic 2019 Barolo (in production since 1881). The bottom of the front label reads "Barolo Pio" in memory of the legendary Pio Boffa. He was a wine entrepreneur who gained the immediate respect and love of all those who knew him. He passed away tragically during the COVID-19 pandemic just as the vaccines were being rolled out. This is a large production of about 70,000 bottles with fruit sourced from across seven vineyards in five villages. Despite those ambitious numbers, the wine remains strictly focused on bright Nebbiolo fruit with red cassis and aniseed. The finish is smooth with tannins that elegantly dissolve over the palate.”
June 20, 2023, James Suckling
“Lovely perfumes of flowers, fresh strawberries and raspberries follow through to a medium- to full-bodied palate with fine tannins that run the length of the wine. Citrus and spice undertones. Finishes long and intense. Tannic finish. Start drinking after 2026.”
The New Wine Review
June 2023, Christy Canterbury MW
“Boldly fruit-driven, this is charismatic, smooth and moreish Nebbiolo. Wow! It’s rare to get such a downright “gluggable” Nebbiolo at this wildly young age. This is powerfully fruit-driven with oodles of bramble, field strawberry and ripe red plum. The high alcohol lingers a bit on the back palate, but there is so much fruit that it is not distracting. There are hints of oak spice, toast and tea leaves that ripple through the fruit flavors and add complexity. Delicious already, this has the high fruit density and well-balanced structure to last easily for two decades.”
May 4, 2023, Audrey Frick
“The 2019 Barolo Pio has a bit more concentration both in pigment and profile, with raspberry liqueur, anise, wet stone, and pressed roses. Medium-bodied, it has ripe tannins and meaty red cherry fruit up front, followed by notes of iron-rich earth, and Earl Grey tea. It has a lot of immediate appeal, but warrants a few more years in the bottle to start to show its best. Drink 2025-2045.”
February 2023, Owen Bargreen
“Really singing already at four years of age, the 2019 Pio Cesare Barolo is a gorgeous effort from this vintage. Intense Asian spices and potpourri notes flood the nose, with shades of kumquat zest and freshly tilled damp earth. The palate is plush and seamless with a very soft texture and glorious length. Firm tannins frame a core of wild strawberry, guava fruit and shades of tangerine peel. Really good now, try to give this at least another year to mature in the bottle. Drink 2024-2045.”
The Pio Cesare family’s unique winemaking method stresses minimal intervention to produce wines of particularly supple flavor expression. A ceaseless devotion to the individuality of each of the region’s wines informs Pio Cesare's choices in the cellar: shorter maceration, separate lot fermentation, judicious selection for barrel and large cask aging, and bottling schedules determined by the ideal structure of each wine. This allows Pio Cesare to craft wines of varying weight, ageability and drinkability as determined by the vineyard rather than market fashion.
This Barolo is produced using the classic “formula” of traditional Barolo families: a wine which embraces and combines each of the unique characteristics of the different terroirs of the appellation, sourcing grapes from the family's multiple vineyards in different communes.
The grapes are sourced from family-owned vineyards in Serralunga d’Alba (Ornato, la Serra, la Briccolina, Lirano), Grinzane Cavour (Gustava, Garretti), La Morra (Roncaglie), Novello (Ravera), and Monforte d’Alba (Mosconi). Vinification takes place in stainless steel tanks, with skin contact for about 30 days. The wine is aged in mid-toasted French oak for three years: 70 percent in 20 to 50 hectoliter casks; 30 percent in barriques.
A traditional vintage delivering fresh fruits and beautiful aromas, with great structure and complexity, intense color and a balanced acidity, with sharp tannins but already approachable—all the classic components of the great outstanding vintages of Barolo.
The particular conditions of the 2019 vintage, with its warm climate and the absence of extremes (frost, heat spikes), an abundant water supply and a late harvest, allowed the Nebbiolo grape to complete its ripening without any stress, enhancing the typical character of each locations, revealing the fascinating diversity of the region characterized by different altitude, positions, exposures, soil and microclimate.
The family started picking Nebbiolo for Barolo on October 13th in the village of Serralunga d’Alba at the Briccolina and Ornato vineyards, usually the earliest sites due to their exposure and soil composition. Harvest continued in the other vineyards of Serralunga (Lirano and Serra), in Monforte d’Alba (Mosconi) and in La Morra (Roncaglie), concluding on October 20th in Novello at the Ravera vineyard.
Varietals: 100% Nebbiolo