Pio Cesare Barolo Pio DOCG
91 Points, #21 Top 100 Most Exciting Wines of 2022
September 1, 2022, Kerin O'Keefe
“Underbrush, hazelnut and new leather aromas come to the forefront along with a whiff of eucalyptus. Linear and already accessible, the palate offers toasted nut, dried cherry and licorice before a coffee close. Polished, refined tannins provide support. Drink through 2028.”
The Wine Advocate
August 11, 2022, Monica Larner
“The 2018 Barolo opens to ripe aromas of dried plum and tobacco. This vintage lacks some of the complexity of a cooler growing season, but these results are far from monochromatic. Those tobacco aromas cede to cedar, earth, forest floor and hints of shaved truffle.”
January 25, 2022, Aldo Fiordelli
“The new selection 'Pio' from Pio Cesare is a blend of the different MGAs of the estate. Classic bright garnet in the glass, the wine is focused on cherry kernels with tar, violet, a bit of camphor and sweet spices. The attack is firm and crisp, introducing a brilliant crunchiness on the palate along with grainy tannins which stretch to a slightly austere finish. It lacks a bit of pulp - a signature of the 2018 vintage - but this is one of the best village-level Barolo this year.”
January 2022, James Suckling
“Aromas of spicy red cherries on a loamy underlay, together with savory twists of forest floor and walnut shell. Some orange rind, too. Full-bodied with very fine, firm and silky tannins and lots of long, focused fruit and spice flavor. Good structure for 2018. Needs a year or two to fully knit together. Best from 2024.”
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), Grinzane Cavour (Gustava), La Morra (Roncaglie), Barolo 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 classic Barolo vintage: elegant and velvety, with ripe and spicy fruit. Strong yet refined tannins. Good structure and concentration. A very long life ahead!
2018 was a traditional vintage, not excessively hot, with abundant rainfall, and therefore less problematic than 2017 from an agronomical standpoint. The family produced Barolos and Barbarescos with defined structure, intense color and aromatic complexity, a great concentration of red fruits, high acidity, clean and firm tannins, round and silky but at the same time structured and powerful, very long-lasting and with an excellent aging potential.
Picking the nebbiolo for Barolo began on October 7th in the Ornato vineyard, a very large amphitheater located in the southern portion of the village of Serralunga d’Alba, exposed to the sun all day long. Thanks to its particular location and soil, Ornato is usual the earliest vineyard we harvest, producing structured and powerful wines, complemented with great finesse and elegance. Harvesting continued in the Mosconi vineyard in the village of Monforte, followed by estate vineyards in Serralunga (Lirano, Serra and Briccolina), then in Gustava and Garretti vineyards in the village of Grinzane Cavour. The nebbiolo harvest finished on October 13th at the Ravera vineyard in Novello.
Varietals: 100% Nebbiolo