Second of two bottles opened (see previous note 12/19/2014). The cork in this 2nd bottle also had some seepage about 50% along its length as might be forgiven with a bottle this age. It was nowhere near as severe as with the first. The cork in fact put up quite a good fight, indicating that the seal was good. This time the aroma when decanting was very pleasant. On first taste, this had fresh acidity, some light fruits, dry tannins but a nice deep red colour. Two hours later, floral notes were emerging with roses and some red fruits to the fore but no tar. The body had also firmed up with beautiful complexity and rounded tannins that made this bottle an absolute pleasure – in fact all that I had expected of a Barolo with this pedigree and age. There is little likelihood of serious improvement from here, but the wine is still holding its own for now. However, the older these bottles get the more that can go wrong, so I would advise anyone with stock to enjoy over the next couple of years but not wait much longer than 2016-2017.
The cork had seepage around 80% along its length. There was no strong corked smell, but the wine tasted oxidized - a really "old wine taste" that although not undrinkable was not an enjoyment either. In view of the high degree of seepage and positive comments from others, I will reserve judgement on whether this bottle was simply flawed or past drinking when I open my next and last bottle. No score for now.
PS: this was flawed - 2nd bottle very enjoyable, see note of 01/10/2015. Like night and day!
Barolo (Vintage v.s. Maker) and others (Extra Space): Appearance is clear, deep intensity, garnet colour. Legs. Nose is clean, medium intensity, with aromas of earth, roses, and integrated oak. Developing. On the palate, dry, high acidity, medium+ alcohol, puckery but fine high tannins, full body. Pronounced flavour intensity, with flavours of nicely integrated oak, red cherry, red plums, earth. Long finish. Very good quality. Well-made Barolo in a modern style. Nicely integrated but not enough tertiary note development yet. Re-explore again in 5 years. Ticks all the boxes technical wise and has the stuffing to age. However, drinking this side by side with the 1996 Aldo Conterno Barolo Cicala, this seems to lack the soul/character to match up.
Drinking very well now. Took 1+ hours to open and was still getting better when meal finished (~2+ hours). Bigger and bolder than I remember from past bottles of same wine/vintage. Fruit really came up after opening. Nice and great value in a Barolo. Not as refined as some of the best from this vintage, but still quite nice.
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