2008 Cortese Barbaresco Rabaja
"The 2008 Barbaresco Rabaja is without question one of the wines of the vintage in this irregular year. It flows with deep layers of menthol, licorice and spices, showing tons of power. This is a dazzling wine endowed with marvelous inner perfume, great richness and huge staying power on the palate. Today it is still quite primary and in need of at least several years of cellaring. Tobacco, licorice and menthol wrap around the palate on the intense finish. The 2008 is a stunning Rabaja from Cortese. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2024." 94 points - Antonio Galloni - Wine Advocate
"(aged for 22 months in big barrels, none new): Good full medium red. The nose offers a tight core of sour cherry, redcurrant, mint, menthol and flowers. Taut rather than fleshy, with penetrating acidity contributing to an impression of energy. The firm tannic spine of this perfumed midweight calls for at least five years of patience." 91 points - Stephen Tanzer - International Wine Cellar
"A pretty red, this evokes flowers, strawberry and raspberry, with an underlying mineral current. Firmly structured, with precision and a long aftertaste of fruit and mineral. Best from 2014 through 2027. 1,000 cases made. -BS" 91 points Wine Spectator
"Subtle aromas of sliced strawberries and flowers with hints of citrus. Full body, with bright acidity and a clean finish. So delicious now but better in 2013." 91 points James Suckling - JamesSuckling.com
"Barbaresco. Palish ruby with watery rim. Sweet, and hinting at fruit, but more savoury at the moment. Quite classic palate, nothing overworked or overdone. Very well balanced as well as elegant. Drink 2013 to 2020. (WS)" 17+ out of 20 points, Jancis Robinson's Purple Pages
"Barbaresco Rabaja is our most important wine and has an intense and ethereal perfume with fresh notes of violets and red fruit that evolve into scents of spices, cocoa, tobacco, and dry fruit as it ages. A full, dry, and robust flavor, with a rich and harmonious structure; garnet red color." -Winery
"The Cortese family produces and vinifies with passion for 3 generations, using grapes from its 8 hectares of vineyards situated in the heart of Rabaja, historical and renown 'Sori' in the territory of Barbaresco. The cru of Rabaja has a favorable exposition to the south/southwest and it expresses in terms of microclimate, soil, and ripening, offering a product that combines all of the characteristics of a great wine." -Winery
2009 - Campo Alla Sughera Adeo
"Velvety wine, with currants, berries, chocolate and vanilla character. Full and soft textured. Delicious now." 90 points James Suckling - JamesSuckling.com
"The height of the wine cellar is exploited, making the most of gravity to move the grapes, must and wines. After de-stemming, the steel maceration tanks are fed from a height without using pumps or augers, which can damage the solid part of the grape. Maceration, together with intense pumping and punching down, is carried out for 10 days at a controlled temperature. After de-vatting and first racking, the wine is decanted partly into steel tanks and partly into barrels for malolactic fermentation."
Ageing: wines made from a blend of vines are aged separately for 12 months in French oak barrels. The wine is assembled before bottling and refined for a further 4 months." -Winery
"Campo alla Sughera is Knauf's winegrowing company based in the heart of Bolgheri, the homeland of great Italian wines. It is in this place that Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are able to express their great qualities. This ability to emerge from the "terroir" of Bolgheri is the basis of the companyâs products. Adeo (Bolgheri DOC Rosso), a "blend" of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, refined for twelve months in French oak barrels and matured in the bottle for approximately four months." -Winery
"The vineyard was conceived according to two cardinal principles: maximum grape quality and maximum mechanization during growing.
Campo alla Sughera has thus created a highly specialized vineyard which covers an area of about 20 hectares. The plots making up the vineyard are all located inside the Bolgheri DOC area, bordered by the Fosso di Bolgheri waterway, which runs alongside the estate itself."
"This is a terroir which is perfectly suited for the production of top quality wines, both red and white. The micro-climate benefits from sea breezes from the coast, which is just a few kilometers away." -Winery
This was rated 89 points by both the Wine Spectator and the Wine Enthusiast.
2009 Carpineta Fontalpino Chianti Classico
"An expression of darker fruit, this red remains fresh and defined by violet, black cherry and spice notes. Polished, but still marked by dense, edgy tannins, matched by sweet fruit on the finish. Best from 2013 through 2020. 600 cases imported." 92 points Wine Spectator
"Wonderful aromas of blueberries and dark chocolate follow through to a full body, with velvety tannins and a fruity finish. Solid and structured Chianti Classico. One of my favorite producers in the area. Better in 2012." 91 points James Suckling - JamesSuckling.com
"Gioia Cresti is building a successful career as a consulting agronomist, but still finds time to make wine on her family's 217-acre estate, located just outside the Chianti Classico zone near Castelnuovo Berardenga, about 10 miles east of Siena."
"Carpineta Fontalpino has been in Cresti's family since the 1960s. Gioia, 39, took over the estate with her brother, Filippo, 45, in 1990 and immediately set about replanting 44 acres of vineyards. She is currently producing some of the most exciting wines in Tuscany, including Dofana, a Sangiovese-Petit Verdot blend that earned a classic, 96-point rating in only its second vintage."
"We aimed at the highest quality possible right from the start," Cresti says, "but we had to wait for the young vines to mature to see the real results. These are coming now, and the quality is where I want it."
"Cresti started experimenting with new Sangiovese and Petit Verdot clones in 2000. The vines produce loosely packed bunches with relatively few grapes per cluster, instead of the typical tight bunches where each grape hugs its neighbor."
"There's less potential for disease and rot," Cresti explains "as well as making for more even ripening. They may look a bit odd," she adds with a smile, "but I've found that the uglier the bunch, the better the wine it produces!"
"The estate's winery is a simple but functional barnlike structure, which Cresti renovated in 1992. In one room there is an assortment of stainless steel and cement vats. Cresti believes in the use of cement, and scrupulously maintains her vats. A second room contains French oak barrels of various sizes, for aging the wines. In 2006, the winery debuted a Chianti Classico made from 12 acres of vineyards Cresti rents nearby."
"Cresti is also busy with her work as a consulting agronomist. She collaborates with Carlo Ferrini, one of Tuscany's best-known consulting enologists, at well-known estates such as Casanova di Neri, Petrolo and Sette Ponti, while also consulting for a half-dozen estates on her own."