I woke up this morning to an email detailing an epic retrospective tasting of the wines from Giuseppe Rinaldi. Antonio Galloni of Vinous had organized this dinner in London complete with vintages spanning 1990-2010. A visit just before harvest in 2012 to the cantina was one of my very fondest memories of travels on the wine route. It was a true privilege to meet the family and taste the wines, including the monumental 2010's still in botti.
The first wines labeled under Giuseppe Rinaldi came in 1921 (pictured below). Battista Rinaldi continued the tradition at the estate in 1945, and after his passing his son Beppe returned home in 1992. Beppe's spirit over the last decades has been even more immortalized than the legendary wines he's produced. It was over this span that worldwide attention on Piedmont had gradually increased, and even in the last 15 years pricing and scarcity of the wines has drastically changed. In 2010 Beppe's daughter's Marta and Carlotta began making the wines, continuing in the same traditional fashion.
Along with drinking the wines of Bartolo Mascarello and Giacomo Conterno, Rinaldis are among the most memorable I've had in Barolo. They appeal to every aspect of the senses and continually remind me that no matter how articulate experiences can be conveyed the true magic of them is a deeply personal one.
As noted by Galloni, most of the production from this cantina had been sold to private customers. Finding back-vintage wines is not a common occurrence today. I was thrilled to be able to work over the last year with Rinaldi's US importer, Vinifera Imports, to acquire several older wines directly from the Rinaldi estate.
Rinaldi is a revered traditionalist, following the techniques Battista and Giuseppe had employed in the early and mid 1900's. Wines are macerated on their skins for a long time, and aging takes place large botti. The results are powerful, deep Barolos that are met with the precision and aromatics that make them incomparable. They offer wild spices, gamey notes, and of course Nebbiolo's tell-tale tar and roses.
Essentially two Barolos were made, the Brunate-Le Coste and the Cannubi (San Lorenzo)-Ravera. Laws recently changed and now multiple crus aren't permitted on labels. Starting in 2010 the Brunate-Le Coste was bottled with a higher 85% Brunate and just 15% Le Coste (the maximum legal addition). The Cannubi (San Lorenzo)-Ravera began to implement wine from Le Coste and the new name for the bottling is"Tre Tine" (three vats).
1997 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$339 per bottle.
1998 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$349 per bottle.
1999 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$419 per bottle.
2001 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$299 per bottle.
2003 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$229 per bottle.
2004 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Cannubi (S. Lorenzo) - Ravera
$276 per bottle.
2005 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$214 per bottle.
2005 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste 1.5L
$449 per bottle.
2005 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Cannubi (S. Lorenzo) - Ravera
$214 per bottle.
2006 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$377 per bottle.
2007 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$205 per bottle.
2007 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Cannubi (S. Lorenzo) - Ravera
$205 per bottle.
2009 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate - Le Coste
$226 per bottle.
2010 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barolo Brunate 3L
$2,629 per bottle.
2011 Giuseppe Rinaldi Langhe Nebbiolo
$79 per bottle.
2015 Giuseppe Rinaldi Barbera d'Alba
$66 per bottle.
2015 Giuseppe Rinaldi Dolcetto d'Alba
$59 per bottle.