This espresso-break picture was taken after a tasting, in Italy, of barolo at Massolino in Serralunga d’Alba. “You look really happy, I’ve never seen you this happy,” remarked one of my tasting colleagues as we stood in the icy cold and chatted. OK. I admit it. I am an Italophile and someone please hide my credit cards or take out my wifi right now before I spend any more money on the current release of 2010 Barolo. I have written a bit about it in the Telegraph but what you really need to know is that the 2010 vintage is very good indeed – elegant and sculptured with great focus. The good wines (there are always going to be bad wines) have both fragrance and sinewy tenacity. Look, I buy this stuff like I buy shoes, or a new dress. It’s not everyday wine expenditure, it’s an object of desire. And when I buy it I’m thinking about the veal chops I’ll cook, the creamy stuffed onions, and the conversations that will roll around the wine glasses as it’s drunk. I have gone for the basic Barolo from Giacomo Fenocchio (Armit, £179.74/case of six) – his wines are glorious, so fragrant, and not over-cooked or heavy. I’ve also bought a more rustic, country table wine of a barolo from a producer called Giacomo Grimaldi, for about £200 for a case of 12, through Fine + Rare. I now need to sit on my credit card. Or at least stay in a lot to make up.
In other Italian news, having cancelled a table because I felt lousy yesterday, I can’t wait to eat at Stevie Parle’s new Dalston restaurant, Rotorino next week.
In other wine news, if you are looking for sub-£6 wines (to balance out the CPS – Cost-Per-Sip – of some barolo, maybe?) I wrote up six of the best here.
And in the spirit of appreciating lo stile italiano, here are some pictures taken while visiting Massolino (their wines are gorgeous too. Real thinking reds. Imported by Liberty Wines.)