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Superb Under $70 Barolo Duo from Artisanal Cucco
December 11, 2019
A Note from Sergio

Every wine-lover has certain wines that signify the holiday season. These are the wines that will always hold an honored place in both celebrations and memory. For me, that wine is Barolo--it is, in fact, my all-around holiday wine, and a wine that I love to receive as well as give. I love to give and to enjoy Barolo because it is a great Italian wine, but I also love Barolo during the holidays because it is the traditional wine of the season in Italy. The real beauty of celebrating this wine lays in the Piemontese people's fierce commitment to tradition and to honoring a wine that was nationally esteemed as the most prestigious and long-aging wine, even when it was difficult because of economic duress, the violence of war, or political problems.

Today, I'm very proud to present a pair of Barolo wines from a producer who's new to IWM, Tenuta Cucco. Family-owned-and-operated by the Rossi Cairo family (who began making wine at its La Raia estate in Gavi), this estate is biodynamic and it makes beautiful Barolo wines that straddle the line between traditional and modern--for example, the Nebbiolo grapes get a nice, long maceration, but the Barolo ages first in barrique and then in traditional botti. What you end up with are wines that speak with Piemonte's roots, but are a little earlier drinking and a little less austere. This approachability is great, but the affordability of Cucco's Barolo is very exciting, especially to Italian wine newbies.

You'll find Cucco's delicate and ethereal 2015 Barolo Serralunga d'Alba and the winery's lush, muscular 2012 Barolo Cerrati in today's eLetter, and neither wine tops $70 a bottle! I look high and low for affordable Barolo, and I was very excited to find Cucco's. I think you'll love drinking these wines, sharing these wines, and, if you want to be very Italian, giving them as gifts!


Today's Featured Sections Include:

1. Spotlight on Excellence: Two Must-Have Barolo Bottles from Tenuta Cucco
2. Wine Events: Upcoming December Wine Tasting Events

My Best,

Sergio Esposito
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Cucco Barolo del Commune de Serralunga d’Alba 2015 750ml
Cucco Barolo del Commune de Serralunga d’Alba 2015 750ml
Price: $59.99

This 2015 Barolo shows the delicate, ethereal side of its banner vintage. Juicy red and blue fruits dance with underbrush, rose petals, licorice, black tea, fresh loam, and baking spices in a nuanced, complex nose. Sweet fruits echo on the palate, balanced with fine-grained tannins, bright acidity, and a chalky minerality that lingers on the wine’s persistent finish. Deriving from a pair of south-southeast-facing plots with chalky, clayey soils, grapes ferment for about twenty days in temperature-controlled steel; the wine ages for two years in botti before resting in bottle for six to twelve months prior to release. more info