B-21 Top Recommendation
Touring Piedmont late last year, I tasted through the top producers' finished wines from the much heralded 2016 vintage, basic Barolo through top Crus. Stunning wines greeted me at one address after another, many reminding me of legendary bottlings from 1989 or '90. Clerico's dazzling offers as usual punctuated my trip, a very definite exclamation point and among the finest set of wines of this tremendous vintage. Domenico grew up in these hills, and when he entered the wine business he began assembling small parcels of the most prestigious vineyards in Monforte d'Alba. Ciabot Mentin and Pajana in Ginestre soon followed – then the prized Serralunga – each showing Nebbiolo in a different shade of dark beauty. Most vines were planted in the '50s and '70s, old vines abound here. Because of these very old vines, Clerico tops the charts even in difficult harvests; hand this estate a vintage as perfect as 2016 and you're in for skyscraper-like quality. Again in this vintage Ciabot Mentin tops my chart. And the sexy spice and depth of spine-tingling complexity is on full display in Pajana and the best Aeroplan Servaj yet. A line up that represents the life and work of Domenico Clerico.