Fratelli Alessandria, Barolo "Monvigliero"
Fratelli Alessandria, Barolo "Monvigliero"

Fratelli Alessandria, Barolo "Monvigliero"

Piedmont, Italy 2019 (750mL)
Regular price$105.00

Fratelli Alessandria, Barolo "Monvigliero"

Many will balk at the assertion that a $100 bottle of wine is a great value, but anyone accustomed to buying elite level “collectibles” knows that this single-vineyard Barolo from Alessandria is an absolute steal. This is a truly charmed combination of vintage (the soon-to-be-legendary 2019), vineyard (the already legendary “Monvigliero” cru), and producer (Fratelli Alessandria, a newly minted superstar), but it costs a fraction of most of the wines it will rest next to in any well-curated cellar. It likely goes without saying that Alessandria is a Team SommSelect favorite, and this bottling is their top-of-the-line offering. It is a tightly allocated item, which means we don’t have much to share, so fast action is recommended—and, trust us, it will be rewarded in spades. 

**And, if that isn’t enough excitement for you, we also have a handful of MAGNUMS of this same wine, a blue-chip investment for Barolo lovers looking for a cellar showpiece. Get yours here

Here’s perhaps the most important piece of intel on Fratelli Alessandria: While they continue to up the ante when it comes to quality (and accompanying critical acclaim), they’ve admirably held the line on price. Then there’s their home village of Verduno, one of the 11 communes that make up the Barolo appellation, which has been having a moment lately. The Alessandria estate, which has been in the same family since 1870, includes about 12 hectares of vineyards, most of them in Verduno. Essentially an extension of the La Morra vineyard area, with similar eastern (and sometimes northern) exposures, Verduno is home at least one bona-fide “grand cru”— the “Monvigliero” vineyard—which Fratelli Alessandria counts among its holdings. 

The Monvigliero site has a wide range of southerly expositions, essentially swooping around from southeast to southwest, and reaches to about 300 meters of elevation. It measures about 39 hectares in total, relatively small by MGA standards, but the number of producers who bottle a wine from the site is a who’s-who of top producers. The wines from here have a reputation for finding a sweet spot combination of power and finesse—which sounds kind of implausible when you see those words on a page but is fascinatingly, thrillingly plausible in the glass.

Alessandro and Vittore Alessandria (father and son, not fratelli) source the fruit for this bottling from 45-year-old heirloom vines in the steep-pitched Monvigliero site. Hand-harvested grapes are de-stemmed, fermented on ambient yeasts in stainless steel, then transferred to large Slavonian oak casks (20- to 40-hectoliter capacity) for three years. After cask aging, the wine is transferred back to tank for two months, then to bottle for six, before it is released. 

This 2019 (a historically great Barolo vintage, by all accounts) displays a deep garnet-red core moving to pink at the rim. The aromas are complex and intense, with black cherry, red currant, raspberry, blood orange, fennel, leather, dried rose petals, tobacco, sandalwood, and a truffle-y, forest-floor earthiness. The wine is medium-plus in body, with tannins that are already well-integrated, especially after 30-60 minutes in a decanter—it is spicy and savory, but also refined and drinkable, with a long and aromatic finish. These wines are always tantalizingly approachable when young, but they are also impeccably balanced and thus well-suited to long term aging. Serve this in your best Burgundy stems at 60-65 degrees and sip it slowly alongside the attached veal recipe, which incorporates black truffles (easier to find than Piedmont’s famous white ones). This wine and that pan sauce were meant for each other. Enjoy!

Fratelli Alessandria, Barolo "Monvigliero"

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