Giacosa Barbaresco Santo Stefano Riserva

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Giacosa Barbaresco Santo Stefano Riserva

Bruno Giacosa’s Barbaresco Santo Stefano Riserva is one of the most revered and collectible bottles of wine in the whole of Italy. This weekend I was packing up all my wines ready to make the bottle shocking trip back to London via Switzerland and France and decided to save this bottle the journey and drink the famous Red Label Barbaresco from Giacosa at my leaving meal in Venice. What a chore!

Aside from some heartbreaking cork taint there wasn‘t going to be any question of disliking the Giacosa. 1998 has been my personal favourite Barolo and Barbaresco vintage to drink in 2008 and this bottle showed exceptionally well offering up all the traditional Piedmont notes as well as a huge dose of marzipan. Garnet red and still needing to disperse its share of tannins the wine is emphatically the best Barbaresco I’ve had this year and can happily be awarded 95 points.

Giacosa Barbaresco Santo Stefano RiservaBUY – €100
Ruby red, garnet hues. The nose on this wine is explosive with tar and roses coming at you but after an hours decanting the wine gave off marzipan notes most strongly. On the palate the wine is full bodied and smooth though still quite tannic. Perfect balance, touches of sweetness on the super-long finish and sweet spices and fruit throughout the tasting experience. Opulent and refined and in a great stage of its drinking window. 95 Points

BUY. BUY? Buy a wine that costs €100? Of course this wine isn’t QPR, when we are talking about €100 bottles of wine we are talking about another experience completely. This is not every day drinking wine but rather wine for a special occasion, a very special occasion! Everyone spends money on something that someone else thinks is insane. Whilst 99% of the population would gawk at €100 for a bottle of wine, others would gladly hand money like this over for a pair of jeans or a haircut… and that would make me gawk.

What might make fellow winos gawk however, is the fact I had this wine with a seafood risotto. Tasted great though! Not the ideal wine for risotto but on this occasion both the wine and the food were so good that they matched in greatness! Not weight, not flavour, but greatness!

Now for some terribly sad new. Blog entries this week may be a little clipped, it’s my last 4 days in Venice and I’m really busy sorting out my move so apologies to you if you read wine90 with a cup of coffee because this weeks entries will be espresso sized. American readers! Please leave your comments, I can see from analytics that this blog has more US readers than UK readers so come forth, show yourselves, don’t skulk in the corners. Americans drink more Italian wine than any other nation so let me know what Italian wines you’re drinking! I’ll throw in a “please” 😀

Where can I buy this wine?
Europeans – Pedrelli – €100
Americans – Anconas Wine – $199
Brits – Fine and Rare – £131
Australians – This Aussie section really isn’t working out for me! Suggestions???

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Is there a country, area or vineyard that constantly disappoints you rather than pleases you? A country’s wines that you just don’t see what the hoo haa is about? Where it be?! And of course… have you had the Giacosa Barbaresco Santo Stefano Riserva in any vintage?

7 Comments Add yours

  1. ah, you are going by car? I’ve done it at the begining of august, it’s a hell of a journey. Good luck…

  2. Mark Harris says:

    Been unable to get on board with Chilean merlot. Unless I am cursed in my trials with the stuff all my friends rave about it and yet it passes me by.I don’t suppose you are in the know about Chilean merlot?

  3. Anonymous says:

    Drank the 97 earlier this year and was also impressed although not quite as ready as your 98 sounds. I will keep the others for another 5 before retrying.

  4. Sally says:

    I try to keep all my wine buys under $100 a bottle even for special days. I’ve had the pleasure of a Bruno Giacosa Barbaresco but just the standard label.

  5. Yes by car my brother is driving me! Nice boy that he is.Re: Chilean Merlot – yeah, I can think of only a handful that I’ve tried so not the best resource for that.

  6. Moonkin says:

    Sampled this wine years ago, a 1980’s vintage and was impressed then and from what I’ve heard it’s even better today. I prefer the old style piedmont producers there is so much character to Giacosa wines. Can not be beaten.

  7. The Prosecco Lady says:

    I’m afraid I must agree, as much as I’m a fan of South American wines, the Chilean Merlot always disappoints.

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