Sunday, June 5, 2016

Wine Review: Nervi Gattinara 2002

Nervi Gattinara 2002

I am here in the presence of The King. Not Elvis Presley, not the king of Nigeria that desperately needs you to wire him money, not the Burger King, and not a king cobra (I hope). Stannis Baratheon may be the one true King of Westeros but Nebbiolo is the king of Italian wine. Highly structured, highly tannic, highly acidic, highly complex, highly ageable, highly praised. Long live the king.

You may know the varietal better when its wine is named by the region where it comes from, most notably Barolo (actually nicknamed "the king") and Barbaresco (nicknamed "the queen") in the northwestern Italian region of Piedmont. Another place in Piedmont that makes famous Nebbiolo is Gattinara. It earned DOC status in 1967 and DOCG in 1990.

Nervi is the oldest winery in Gattinara still standing, founded in 1906. And I have the 2002 vintage of Nervi's Gattinara. After some decanting I'm ready to review it... but first I need to check under the furniture for snakes because I've now freaked myself out.

I must apologize for the quickness of this review. This bottle was given to me for a different reason so I would like to write this up really quick and go enjoy the wine away from the computer. Sorry. But really, not sorry.

The color of the wine is a dark brick red. Even though the color is dark it's got excellent clarity and you could read the newspaper through it if anybody actually read the newspaper anymore. The nose is like the wine is screaming "I'M NEBBIOLO YOU SON OF A BITCH COME AND GET ME!" There's aromas of violets, moss, tar, maple bacon, cocoa powder and strong ethanol.

In the mouth it's medium bodied but, as it should be, extremely high in tannin and acidity. It's not very forgiving to the organic matter of your mouth. I searched my olfactory memory for the fruit that's on the palate and what I came up with was cran-grape juice. But with it, and maybe even in more parts, there's leather and all those things on the nose. It finishes extremely dry, hot and tasting like you licked a piece of wood.

Buying this wine should be considered a ROBBERY for Nebbiolo at $32. If you don't feel like ageing this beauty any further then I suggest you decant it. Like, all day. Cheers!

Price: $32
Rating: 5/5 = Highly Recommended (what does that mean?)

The bottle used was supplied free of charge by Baystate Wine & Spirits. To have your wine reviewed follow this link.


  1. Love hearing about any Italian wines. I must find this!

    1. From what I hear, it's not all that hard to find. :)



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