Next comes 50-hectoliter botte number 88 that houses the upcoming 2015 Barolo Francia. Again, this wine will be bottled by the time you read this, with Conterno's newest vintages hitting the market in October. What impresses most here is the supreme elegance of the wine. It speaks in hushed whispers, enunciating promises of depth, complexity and mysterious intrigue. The wine unfolds slowly, revealing new elements with each swirl of the glass. Together, these aromas build in intensity and stature to become a magnificent Barolo with a capital B. The bouquet exudes elegance and complexity that will carry it through the ages. When I tasted this wine from barrel last year, I described it as demure. One year later, the wine is bursting with confidence, character and moxie.
Here are my reviews of barrel samples tasted at the winery the last week of April. Among the samples is a new wine produced for the first time: the 2015 Barolo Arione, made with fruit from one of the estate's most high profile recent land acquisitions. Roberto Conterno will bottle all these wines on June 10th, just as we prepare to go to print. These wines will hit the market in October. When appropriate, I have given final scores to these wines, or a range of scores, accordingly. This year, I not only tasted new vintages, I got to taste from a new glass too. Roberto Conterno has designed new stemware called Sensory. With the help of his son who made 3-D computer designs from Roberto’s hand sketches, the Sensory glass offers these distinguishing factors: 1) The universal glass is used for both white and red wines; 2) The base of the balloon is almost flat, giving the wine a wider rest area at the bottom; 3) The side curve of the balloon is taller and wider, at a very open angle. This gives the wine more room to travel when you swirl the glass; and 4) The actual stem is on the short side, giving you the ideal distance between your fingers to hold the glass steady. My impression? Wow, this glass is to wine what high definition is to a television screen.