Unbeatable Aged Nebbiolo Value:
2006 Petterino Gattinara

Posted by Joe Salamone

The Petterino estate seems lost in time.

With Conterno's purchase last year, it's official that the northern Piedmont has blown up. (Though for many it happened long ago.)

Still, you can find producers who spent years in relative obscurity and that results in plenty of value to be had.

Petterino drives this point home. He has quietly worked following traditional methods for decades. Traditional for Petterino includes following the old fashioned process of holding wines back and releasing them as they are entering maturity.

Petterino's Gattinara is one of the purest expressions of this appellation. Think of Gattinara as representing a middle ground between the alpine, floral briskness of Carema and the muscular intensity of Barolo or Barbaresco.

At one point, it should be mentioned, Gattinara had a reputation for complexity and longevity that rivaled Barolo and Barbaresco. At nearly 13 years of age this wine is just coming into a wonderful place.

2006 has shaped up to be a really impressive vintage in Piedmont. The vintage's classic structure didn't reveal its full glory at first, but now it's clear that it produced serious and complicated wines. 2006 offers the whole package of typical Nebbiolo scents and flavors, freshness and structure backed by intensity.

Petterino's Gattinara really highlights all of these qualities along with offering the nuance that age brings to the Nebbiolo grape. It possesses a mineral elegance and an overall sense of completeness. The spiced dark fruits and bright floral notes are present with a wonderful precision.

The wines of Gattinara have an impressive track record for aging. Bottles from the 70s are still drinking well today. Obviously, we can't guarantee the 2006 will age similarly, but given the structure, it certainly has 5-10 years ahead of it.

I should close with a warning. It's been six years since our last Petterino offer, but our offers for 1996 and 2001 sold out in a flash. We expect the 2006 to quickly disappear. Traditionally made Nebbiolo with age at this price point is a rarity not to be missed.

To order, email offers@crushwineco.com or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Joe Salamone

Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits