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Date: Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016


Time: 6 PM


Price: Members: $84
            Guests:     $104

          (includes appetizers)


Venue: Faculty Club, Univ. of Toronto,

         41 Willcocks Street
         Toronto, Ontario
         M5S 1C7  - 


Mailed Reservations
          - February 16th, 2016
Online Payments
         - February 23rd, 2016


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2006 Barolos A Very Great Vintage

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2016


Guest Speaker: TBD


Notes on the Wines

How the Wines Were Ranked



NOTE: This event is held on the 4th Tuesday of February, rather than our usual 3rd Tuesday to avoid the week of “Family Day”.


The Nebbiolo grape is to Barolo what the Pinot Noir grape is to Burgundy.  Both grapes have made their wine-producing regions famous, for good reason since they both produce high quality, long-lasting wines.  While the Pinot Noir grape has made a successful transition to other wine-producing regions throughout the world – as TVC demonstrated in its New World PN tasting last month - the same cannot be said of Nebbiolo.  It’s extremely difficult to grow outside of north-west Italy and it’s rare to find it elsewhere because cuttings and clones are jealously guarded.  Hence, when we talk about Nebbiolo, it’s synonymous with Italy and as Italy’s greatest wine – Barolo - considered the King of Wines!  Nebbiolo  derives either from "nebbia", Italian for "fog" or "nobile", Italian for "noble". Regardless, it’s a great wine variety, producing bigger, darker and more tannic wines than most other grape varieties, but consequently long-lived and very prized by collectors.

Barolo is a very robust red wine, full-bodied, tannic and very dry. It’s a “chewy” wine. The aroma is similar to ripe strawberries, tar, roses, violets and truffles. Barolos are not cheap, although not nearly as expensive as other benchmark wines like Bordeaux and Burgundy.


What about 2006 as a vintage?  One winemaker/producer, Bruno Giacosa, stirred up a lot of controversy by refusing to bottle any Barolo or Barbarescos from 2006 because of the somewhat volatile weather but no one else followed his decision.   “What was equally clear in conversations with Barolo producers and from tasting barrel samples still maturing in wood, is that these are powerful wines, deeply coloured and full bodied, still quite tannic and closed. One can already perceive a very long, positive future for them, in no way inferior to the 2005s and 2004s.


They can be described as wines of good depth, sturdy structure and fine elegance, already more open than the ’05s (which were rough-edged at this stage of their life) and which display appealing, snappy tannins and a nervy acidity.


Sergio Germano, who is based in Serralunga d’Alba, goes further, finding 2006 similar to 1996 and 1999: ‘Both of these were lean and austere in style, with impressive tannic structures – wines that required considerable cellaring but were complex to their core.’ Valter Fissore, of Elvio Cogno in Novello, defines 2006 as ‘a very great year, more classic compared to 2007 and 2008 and long-lived as well’.” Read more at  Robert Parker gave the 2006 vintage 97/100.


Our wines have been cellaring for almost 10 years.  According to predictions, they need at least a decade so at this stage, they should be youthful but fairly tannic still. It’s been a few years since we’ve presented Barolos so we hope you’ll join us.  Please remember to refrain from wearing scented products and dress code is business casual.  Light appetizers will be served with our wines.



The Wines

2006 Luigi Baudana Barolo    $85
Baudana comes from a historical vineyard called the “forgotten cru”.  “Powerful and incisive in its dark fruit, tar, smoke and iron. The Baudana shows more depth and roundness than the straight bottling, but there isn’t as much of a difference between the wines as there was in 2005. “This is another set of delicious wines from Baudana, which seems to have found a new gear under the ownership of the Vajra family. These 2006 Baroli are very strong, even if the qualitative jump over previous vintages is not quite so striking as it was last year. Still, it will be fascinating to see the direction these wines take with the newer vintages that Vajras have shepherded from start to finish as opposed to these wines, which they found essentially already made when they bought the winery last year.”  Drink: 2014 - 2024. Wine Advocate #192, Dec. 2010. Antonio Galloni. 92/100. Wine spectator – 94/100


2006 Giovanni Manzone Barolo Bricat  $55
The 2006 Barolo Bricat shows a touch more richness and depth than the Gramolere. Dark cherries, plums and herbs come together nicely on a mid-weight frame laced with considerable aromatic nuance, textural elegance and complexity. The Bricat is a highly appealing wine from Manzone. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2026. Wine Advocate #193, Feb 2011. Antonio Galloni. Drink: 2016 - 2026. 94/100 


2006 Marcarini, Barolo Brunate            $45
The 2006 Barolo Brunate blossoms on the palate with layers of dark fruit, menthol, spices and minerals, all of which come together with a classic, ethereal weight that is quite appealing. The tannins are formidable, but there is more than enough richness and depth in the fruit to provide balance. The finish is surprisingly round and harmonious at this stage but I expect the wine to close down on itself over the coming months. Marcarini’s 2006 Barolo Brunate is simply terrific. Proprietor Manuel Marchetti says that his plot in Brunate sees wider temperature fluctuations than his vineyard in La Serra, which in large part accounts for the differences between his two Barolos.   Anticipated maturity: 2016-2026. Wine Advocate #187, Feb 2010. Antonio Galloni. 93/100


2006 Paolo Conterno, Barolo Ginestra   $65
Wine Spectator: Rated as Classic: a great wine. "Though intense, this is elegant and vibrant, exhibiting pure cherry, raspberry and tobacco aromas and flavors. Its tannins are very well-integrated. The lingering aftertaste evokes coffee and mineral. Best from 2013 through 2032. 300 cases imported." Mar 2011.  “The 2006 Barolo Ginestra shows wonderful thrust in a bright, vibrant expression of this site. Flowers, menthol, red fruits and spices sit on a wiry, energetic frame as this beautifully balanced Barolo opens up in the glass. The 2006 Ginestra seems to be holding quite a bit of its potential in check, but it is already highly appealing, even if the tannins naturally require a few years in bottle to soften. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2026.  Wine Advocate #192, Dec 2010. Antonio Galloni. 93/100

2006 Icardi, Barolo Parej        $49
“. . .a stunning example of Barolo. Lots of depth here. In its youth it's still showing vibrant dark fruit but the structure and complexity is definitly there, presenting the nose with hints of tar and spice. Tannins are firm but balanced, with a delightful finish. Tons of depth in this Barolo and my only regret is that I didn't wait another 5+ years before enjoying! Michael Egerton, WineAlign.  “Aged in new French barriques for 36 months. Colour: ruby red. Bouquet: rich and spicy. Flavour: Hints of ripe cherry.”


2006 Cantine Giacomo Ascheri Barolo Pisapola    $44
Founded in 1880 and still family owned, "Cantine Giacomo Asheri" lies at the heart of the city of Bra in the province of Cuneo in the Italian region Piedmont.  “This is a wonderfully balanced, elegant and lithe Barolo from Matteo Ascheri, with all of the firmness and finesse characteristic of the more refined side of the appellation. Acidity is lively and juicy while tannins are light but firm. The range of flavours is haunting and lingers on nicely. A textbook model and brilliant value, drinking now but should hold nicely over a half-dozen years or so. Tasted October 2011. “John Szabo, MS,


2006 Josetta Saffirio, Barolo Persiera   $75
The 2006 Barolo Persiera flows with the essence of wild black cherries, herbs, violets and minerals in a taut, linear style bursting with personality. This is an exceptionally beautiful wine, but one that will require considerable patience. Today the tannins are rather imposing, but in a few years they should soften, allowing the fruit to emerge more fully. Anticipated maturity: 2016 -2026.  Wine Advocate #192, Dec 2010. Antonio Galloni. 92+/100


2006 Azelia, Barolo San Rocco               $85
Proprietor Luigi Scavino doesn’t get anywhere near the attention he deserves, but make no mistake about it, his top Barolos play in the same league with Piedmont’s elite bottlings. The Barolos see malolactic fermentation and aging in French oak barriques, although the Margheria is aged in medium-size French oak barrels. The 2006 Barolo San Rocco is sensual and enveloping. It’s hard to know where to start with the San Rocco, as fruit, acidity and structure are all beautifully integrated and refined. Still incredibly young, the wine will require a bit of patience, but the purity of the fruit is impossible to miss even at this early stage. The finish alone is eternal. Anticipated maturity: 2016-2026.  Wine Advocate #187, Feb. 2010. Antonio Galloni.  95/100

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How The Wines Were Ranked


Name of Wine (in order poured) Group Ranking Guest Ranking
A -
Cantine Giacomo Ascheri Barolo Pisapola
7 6
B -
Marcarini, Barolo Brunate
8 4
C -
Icardi, Barolo Parej
1 3
D -
Giovanni Manzone Barolo Bricat
3 5
E -
Paolo Conterno, Barolo Ginestra
5 2
F -
Josetta Saffirio, Barolo Persiera
6 8
G -
Luigi Baudana Barolo
2 7
H -
Azelia, Barolo San Rocco
4 1