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1998 Gaja Barbaresco Nebbiolo
7/6/2013 - Riccardo Malocchio wrote:
92 points
My first Gaja. Vivid, youthful color, darker than traditional Barbaresco, and considerably purpler than the typical translucent amber garnet. Wide open on the nose and palate, and clearly very well made with an abundance of very sweet, still mostly primary fruit and oak vanillin. Round on the palate and long with a glossy texture. At this stage of evolution, there's not much Nebbiolo typicity that I could discern. No ethereal fragrance of drying rose petals, nor any earthy forest floor or truffley umami, not even a streak of anise. More than anything, it lacked those sour and bitter qualities that give depth and interest to the fruit profile and which play out so wonderfully on the finish of more traditional wines from the Langhe. If tasted blind, I might suggest a modern-styled right bank Bordeaux as the flavor profile suggested something more akin to barrique-aged Merlot. This is a wine I can appreciate but probably never love. Drunk at Troquet, Boston.
  • Kevin and Kate Fleming commented:

    8/7/14, 9:06 AM - I just drank the 1997 (it was also my first Gaja) and concur with your great analysis. I thought something might have been off with the bottle because it was such a departure from traditional Barolo/Barbaresco.

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