Antoniolo Gattinara San Francesco is a wonderful expression of the Nebbiolo grape from the Gattinara appellation of Piedmont, located far north of the Barolo/ Barbaresco zones in the Alpine foothills close to Lago Maggiore. Its sibling, Osso San Grato, in the 2005 vintage just earned the ultimate honor for Italian wines, winning Red Wine of the Year from Gambero Rosso, which also awarded the wine its coveted top rating, Tre Bicchieri. Antonio Galloni for Wine Advocate calls Antoniolo "a reference-point producer for first-class Gattinara." Burton Anderson in The Wine Atlas of Italy calls Rosanna Antoniolo "the most dynamic winemaker" in Gattinara. The Gattinara appellation has produced Nebbiolo wines since the 12th century, but its tiny total of 120 hectares is splintered among 100 owners, of whom only 15 bottle their own wines. Antoniolo is truly the benchmark producer with exceptional holdings in the appellation's 3 greatest crus: Osso San Grato, San Francesco and Castelle. This release is very limited! Galloni rated this wine 95 points, calling it "the finest San Francesco I have ever tasted."
Antoniolo Gattinara San Francesco is garnet red in color with a nose of red cherries, berries, mint, mineral notes and freshly cut roses. It is full in body with bright acidity, velvety tannins, finesse and rich flavors of raspberries, cherries, plums, marzipan and spice. Aged in oak barrels for 30 months followed by one year in bottles, this big red will reward several years of cellaring and drink best from 2014-2027. It is long and rich on the finish.
Enjoy Antoniolo Gattinara San Francesco with osso bucco, lasagna, veal chops and aged cheeses.