2005 Barolo, Le Vigne, Luciano Sandrone, Piedmont, Italy

2005 Barolo, Le Vigne, Luciano Sandrone, Piedmont, Italy

Product: 20051104712
2005 Barolo, Le Vigne, Luciano Sandrone, Piedmont, Italy

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As ever, Le Vigne's blend of vineyards brings complexity as well as homogeneity across vintages. 2005 is now different, being darker, fuller, meatier, the classic tar and roses character shown to great effect thanks to iron-rich soils. And as ever Luciano has left no stone unturned in his quest for perfection: Le Vigne's supremely supple despite the trickier red cherry stone vintage profile. Drinking now till 2020, along with duck.
(David Berry Green)

Sandrone's wines are well into the modern style of Barolo - their modern winery is hugely impressive and couldn't be more different than some of the region's more traditional producers. The wines are impeccably well made and the 2005 Le Vigne is no exception. Full, sweet fruit envelops a firm Nebbiolo backbone, and the fruit is in turn balanced by a flashy cloak of perfectly integrated new oak. Yes, this is modern, maybe flashy, but complete in every sense.
(BBR Fine Wine)

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Critics reviews

Wine Advocate94/100
The 2005 Barolo Le Vigne opens with fresh, high-toned aromas that meld into a core of perfumed red fruits. There is notable vibrancy to the fruit, and although the 2005 is a relatively small-scaled vintage for this wine, the balance is exceptional. The Le Vigne has more than enough fruit to follow through all the way to the close, where notes of raspberry jam offer a final burst of intensity. Le Vigne is made from a number of parcels in Vignane (Barolo), Conterni and Ceretta (Monforte) and Merli (Novello). In 2005 the harvest took place in the first two weeks of October. The wines were vinified separately, then racked into 500-liter barrels. The final blend was assembled in the summer of 2006. Every year I taste through the various parcels separately and every year I am amazed by the way the final blend transcends the quality of the individual wines. Simply put, Le Vigne is a gem of a wine from Luciano Sandrone. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2021.
Antonio Galloni - 29/04/2009 Read more
Jancis Robinson MW16.5/20
A heady rose bouquet - almost Turkish delight! Tangy and pert, seems to be delicate and pretty and a profusion of savoury spices on the finish. Very smooth gliding tannins.
(Tamlyn Currin - jancisrobinson.com - 25 Mar 2010) Read more

About this WINE

Luciano Sandrone

Luciano Sandrone

Today, Sandrone is one of Barolo’s most admired names, but this producer came from humble beginnings. The son of the local carpenter, Luciano Sandrone always dreamed of owning his own vineyard and making his own wine. He achieved his lifelong ambition in 1978, buying a small plot in Cannubi Boschis. This now-legendary vineyard proved pivotal in securing his family’s fortunes; Luciano’s wines were among the first in the region to garner worldwide acclaim. Driven by Luciano’s clarity of vision, the estate has since expanded to over 20 hectares. His original vineyard, now in front of the family’s home and winery, produces the fruit that goes into their Aleste Barolo. Since the early ’90s, Luciano has worked alongside his children Luca and Barbara, and increasingly his grandchildren Alessia and Stefano. 

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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Located due south of Alba and the River Tanaro, Barolo is Piedmont's most famous wine DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita), renowned for producing Italy's  finest red wines from 100 percent Nebbiolo

Its red wines were originally sweet, but in 1840 the then extant Italian monarchy, the House of Savoy, ordered them to be altered to a dry style. This project was realised by French oenologist Louis Oudart, whose experience with Pinot Noir had convinced him of Nebbiolo's potential. The Barolo appellation was formalised in 1966 at around 1,700 hectares – only a tenth of the size of Burgundy, but almost three times as big as neighbouring Barbaresco.

Upgraded to DOCG status in 1980, Barolo comprises two distinct soil types: the first is a Tortonian sandy marl that produces a more feminine style of wine and can be found in the villages of Barolo, La Morra, Cherasco, Verduno, Novello, Roddi and parts of Castiglione Falletto. The second is the older Helvetian sandstone clay that bestows the wines with a more muscular style. This can be found in Monforte d'Alba, Serralunga d'Alba, Diano d'Alba, Grinzane Cavour and the other parts of Castiglione Falletto. Made today from the Nebbiolo clones Lampia, Michet and Rosé, Barolo has an exceptional terroir with almost every village perched on its own hill. The climate is continental, with an extended summer and autumn enabling the fickle Nebbiolo to achieve perfect ripeness.

Inspired by the success of modernists such as Elio Altare, there has been pressure in recent years to reduce the ageing requirements for Barolo; this has mostly been driven by new producers to the region, often with no Piedmontese viticultural heritage and armed with their roto-fermenters and barriques, intent on making a fruitier, more modern style of wine.

This modern style arguably appeals more to the important American market and its scribes, but the traditionalists continue to argue in favour of making Barolo in the classic way. They make the wine in a mix of epoxy-lined cement or stainless-steel cuves, followed by extended ageing in 25-hectoliter Slavonian botte (barrels) to gently soften and integrate the tannins. However, even amongst the traditionalists there has been a move, since the mid-1990s, towards using physiologically (rather than polyphenolically) riper fruit, aided by global warming. Both modernist and traditional schools can produce exceptional or disappointing wines.

Recommended traditionalist producers:
Giacomo Borgogno, Giacomo Conterno, Bruno Giacosa, Elio Grasso, Marcarini, Bartolo Mascarello and Giuseppe Mascarello.

Recommended nmdernist producers:
Azelia, Aldo Conterno, Luciano Sandrone, Paolo Scavino and Roberto Voerzio

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Nebbiolo is the grape behind the Barolo and Barbaresco wines and is hardly ever seen outside the confines of Piedmont. It takes its name from "nebbia" which is Italian for fog, a frequent phenomenon in the region.

A notoriously pernickety grape, it requires sheltered south-facing sites and performs best on the well-drained calcareous marls to the north and south of Alba in the DOCG zones of Barbaresco and Barolo.

Langhe Nebbiolo is effectively the ‘second wine’ of Piedmont’s great Barolo & Barbarescos. This DOC is the only way Langhe producers can declassify their Barolo or Barbaresco fruit or wines to make an early-drinking style. Unlike Nebbiolo d’Alba, Langhe Nebbiolo can be cut with 15% other red indigenous varieties, such as Barbera or Dolcetto.

Nebbiolo flowers early and ripens late, so a long hang time, producing high levels of sugar, acidity and tannins; the challenge being to harvest the fruit with these three elements ripe and in balance. The best Barolos and Barbarescos are perfumed with aromas of tar, rose, mint, chocolate, liquorice and truffles. They age brilliantly and the very best need ten years to show at their best.

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