The 2012 Barbaresco shows different DNA from its previous incarnations. Angelo Gaja usually blends fruit from 14 vineyard sites to make this wine. Starting with this vintage, he has opted to reduce that number to eight vineyards instead. The change is subtle, but you can taste it. At this young stage in the wine's life I was unsure of the results. This Barbaresco is more austere, thorny and nervous compared to the super supple and rich vintages of the immediate past. The nose shows dark fruit follow by cola, garden herb and white pepper. The mouthfeel is silky and firm and edgy.
My meeting with Angelo and Gaia Gaja revealed a few surprises including a fascinating look at the 1996 Langhe Gaia & Rey Chardonnay tasted from magnum. Gaja's long-time winemaker, Guido Rivella retired last year. He had consulted with the Gaja family since 1970 and today Alessandro Albarello has taken over as winemaker. One subtle change in approach concerns the DOCG Barbaresco. In the past, the wine represented a blend of fruit from 14 vineyards. With the 2012 edition, that number has been taken down to eight instead in an effort to better underline the wine's territorial identity. Gaia Gaja describes this break from tradition as "a very difficult decision" to make.
Leveres i Original trækasse ved 6 flasker.