Thursday, January 17, 2013

Day 6, November 9, 2012

Bartolo Mascarello

This was our last day in Piemonte and lucky for us one of the best visits of the week was awaiting in the morning at Bartolo Mascarello with legend's daughter Maria Teresa.  The entire range of wines was incredible here - probably my favorite tasting of the entire trip in terms of the quality of the juice.  We tasted through the entire current release, including her Dolcetto, Barbera, Freisa and Barolo.  The 2008 Barolo really knocked my socks off.  Dave and I both bought bottles to bring home.  I only bought one - huge mistake.  I should have bought at least three of them plus a magnum.  Maria Teresa was a terrific guide.  Very passionate, very kind and incredibly knowledgeable about her craft.  Returning to Bartolo Mascarelo on my next visit to Piemonte is a must.  Spectacular wines and a fascinating facility with a long and important history right in the town of Barolo.

Our last lunch was at Locanda del Centro in the tiny town of Castiglione Falletto.  This was hands down, my favorite lunch of the trip.  The food was superb.  We started with the antipasti plate, which was off the charts.  The carne cruda was absolute heaven.  I loved the nice homey decor in the upstairs part of the restaurant. Consistent with most places we dined in the area, the wine list was stellar and fairly priced.  I definitely want to come back here for dinner.  This was a top notch dining experience.  Great service too.

The last visit of the trip was with Paolo Scavino.  It was pretty tough to find the place using the GPS.  We got a little lost and showed up a bit late.  This was a very generous tasting as a huge amount of wines were poured including all of the current Baroli and the big gun riserva Annunziata.  The wines showed well (if you like the style) - all polished and well made, showing the influence of oak.  All very open and accessible right now.  I'm just not a fan of modern Baroli so I was less than excited about what I was tasting.  The facility at Scavino is large and they proudly show off their roto fermenters, which have been the source of much controversy in the region over the years.  If you like wines made in the modern style, it is worth a visit.

That wrapped up a great week of wine visits in Piemonte.  The views, wine and food were all spectacular.  I plan to be back here again in the near future.  Next time I won't make the mistake of not visiting Giacomo Conterno!

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