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2012 Gattinara

Franco Patriarca

2012 Gattinara Franco Patriarca - Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant
If Barolo is like a refined and trained Great Dane, Gattinara is a stoic, yet wild gray wolf. Located in the Alto Piemonte, deep into the foothills of the Alps, the winemakers of Gattinara relish their apartness from the other top wines of the region. They insist on using the local name for the Nebbiolo grape—Spanna—and the wines, though undeniably Piemontese, have a rustic edge. Franco Patriarca is one of the leaders of a movement to bring attention to this little-known DOCG. To say his wine is rare is an understatement. Of the total 250 cases that he makes, we have only 5 for our retail shop. Though we might not be able to get you a case, call your salesperson soon to secure a few bottles. –Clark Z. Terry
Vintage: 2012
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: 98% Spanna (Nebbiolo), 2% Vespolina/Uva Rara
Appellation: Gattinara
Country: Italy
Region: Piedmont
Producer: Franco Patriarca
Winemaker: Franco Patriarca
Vineyard: 30-60 years, 2.5 ha
Soil: Porphyry (Volcanic soil)
Aging: Wine ages for 36 months in 10 or 20 HL botte that are between 15 and 30 years old
Farming: Sustainable

More from this Producer or Region

About Piedmont

Kermit’s love affair with the great reds of Piemonte dates back to the early days of his career: the very first container he imported from Italy, in fact, featured legendary 1971 and 1974 Barolos from Vietti and Aldo Conterno. Regular visits since then have seen our portfolio grow to now nine Piemontesi estates, with a strong focus on the rolling hills of the Langhe.

Nebbiolo rules these majestic, vine-covered marl slopes, giving Italy’s most mystifyingly complex, nuanced, and age-worthy reds. When crafted via traditional production methods—long macerations and extensive aging in enormous oak botti—the powerful, yet incredibly refined Barolos and Barbarescos provide haunting aromatics of tar, raspberry, incense, tea, roses, and more. At times austere in their youth but well worth the wait, they pair beautifully with the hearty local cuisine starring veal in many forms, braised beef, pastas like tajarin and agnolotti, and of course, Alba’s famous white truffles.

Surrounded by mountains on three sides, Piemonte’s climate is continental, with baking hot summers and cold winters. Nebbiolo is only part of the story here: juicy, fruity Barberas and Dolcettos represent the bread and butter throughout the region, and other native grapes like Freisa, Croatina, and the white Arneis are also noteworthy. Value abounds in the Monferrato, while Alto Piemonte also has its share of thrills to provide.

Every corner of Piemonte is rich with tradition, especially when wine is concerned. It’s no wonder we have been singing the region’s praises for over forty years.

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When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:

1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.

Inspiring Thirst, page 174

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When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:

1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.

Inspiring Thirst, page 174

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