From: Piedmont, Italy
Winemaker's Notes: The warm-but-not hot vintage of 2018 gave us a Le Vigne Barolo of great delicacy and excellent structure. The nose is forceful but not explosive – it is balanced and open, expanding upwards in the glass with spicy notes framing black and red fruits.
On the palate, the wine is open and engaging, recalling vintages of similar climatic character such as 2012 and 2015. The tannins are ripe, open and silky, the mouthfeel is filling without being heavy, the acidity is fresh and the finish is long with a distinct mineral note.
Taste & Critical Acclaim: “The delicate mix of creamy red berries and savory, truffley notes keeps your nose glued to the glass. And that subtlety is carried over into the medium-to full-bodied palate, where there’s a youthful balance of silky fruit and lightly firm tannins that drives gently through the long finish. Subtle is the word, but excellent is the verdict.” –James Suckling, 95 points (June 2022)
“One of my personal favorites, the 2018 Barolo Le Vigne is savory in character and packed with dark fruit. Ripe cherry and redcurrant cedes to spice, licorice and fragrant rose. The oak is integrated, but there are added accents of spice and dark tar. Le Vigne is a blend of fruit from Baudana in Serralunga d'Alba, Villero in Castiglione Falletto, Vignane in Barolo and Merli in Novello.” –Monica Larner, Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate, 96 points (June 2022)
“Camphor, violet, red berry and oak-driven spice are front and center on this fragrant red. Elegantly structured and vibrant, the focused palate delivers juicy red cherry, crushed strawberry, star anise and a hint of mocha alongside taut, fine-grained tannins. Bright acidity keeps it balanced.” –Kerin O’Keefe, Wine Enthusiast, 94 points (June 2022)
“A taut red, with alluring aromas and flavors of rose petal, strawberry, cherry, tea and graphite fused to an elegant frame. Reveals its structure on the long finish, where there's plenty of fruit in the end. Delivers terrific balance and harmony.” –B.S., Wine Spectator, 95 points (January 2023)
The 2018 Barolo Le Vigne is a mid-weight, tightly wound wine, with a classic sense of austerity that will need at least a few years in bottle to start softening. Red cherry fruit, white flowers, mint and chalk lend brightness and tension throughout. In 2018, the blend of vineyards is Baudana, Villero, Vignane and Merli.” –Antonio Galloni, Vinous, 93 points (November 2021)
About. Luciano Sandrone is one of the most iconic producers in Barolo, and his is both a well known and extraordinary story. He started to learn viticulture at the age of 14 or 15, and after years of work as a cellarman he depleted his life savings and purchased his first vineyard on the Cannubi hill in 1977, though he could only manage his land on the weekends while he continued to work. He made his first vintage in 1978, in the garage of his parents, and then spent years refining his ideas about how to make a wine of distinction and utmost quality that respected the traditions of Barolo while incorporating new ideas and understanding about viticulture and vinification. He made every vintage until 1999 at home, until the winery he constructed in 1998 was ready for use.
Sandrone's wines are sometimes described as straddling the modern and traditional styles in the region: elegant, attractive and easy to appreciate right from their first years in bottle, but with no less power and structure than traditional Barolos. Along with the extremely low yields in the vineyard and an obsessive attention to training, pruning and harvesting, Sandrone has a very rational approach in the cellar. This approach, however, is also unique and outside of simple classification: Sandrone subjects his wines to medium-length maceration period, shorter than traditional, but makes limited use of new oak in the maturation process, which takes place in 500 liter tonneaux, all signs of a more traditional approach in the cellar. The entire range of wines, all limited in production, are jewels of impeccably balanced concentration and precision, and the ability to age for long periods of time.
Barolo Le Vigne represents our interpretation of the tradition of the Langhe and Barolo: that of the ancient and skillful art of blending Nebbiolo from several vineyards. We have taken up this historical custom working only with indigenous yeasts and keeping the grapes separate until the final assembly and blending, instead of mixing them during the fermentation phase.
A perfect diagonal. We meticulously chose four vineyards to highlight the characteristics of the Barolo area. The vineyards of Baudana in Serralunga d'Alba, Villero in Castiglione Falletto, Vignane in Barolo and Merli in Novello draw a perfect diagonal through the area, each of which includes different terrains: light and sandy, more compact and deep, at various altitudes and exposures.
Every year a new discovery. Harvested, vinified and aged separately, the final blend of each vintage combines the constituent parts to best express the particular character of each vineyard and enhance the uniqueness of each year.
Barbara Sandrone beams with pride for ’18, which draws similarities to the great ’08 and ’12 vintages. It was a challenging growing year in the vineyards, but the end of the growing season was calm, and the resulting wines are classical and fine. The suppleness of the vintage mutes some of the firm intensity we know from Sandrone, but the wines do not suffer from it. Instead, they feel alive and open, coiled with that serious, polished edge we know and admire from this resplendent family cantina.
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