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2016 Barbaresco – The Vintage of a Lifetime

“ With the 2016 vintage, Barbaresco has catapulted itself to the very top of Italian fine wine…the vintage has turned out an almost embarrassing number of great wines.” JancisRobinson.com

 “A very high quality vintage with the potential to be truly extraordinary” Antonio Galloni, Vinous

I can’t recommend 2016 Barbaresco high enough. Never have I tasted so many great wines showing potential greatness. Delicious in their youth, with age they will be sublime. This is THE vintage of Barbaresco.

What made 2016 so good? Basically a long, moderate growing season with no dramatic spikes in the weather. No excessive heat in July and August meant that most of the ripening took place in the cooler days of September and October creating excellent balance of fruit and acidity. Nature certainly did its stuff!

Why are the wines so amazing? They have the perfume and delicate fruit structure that you expect, but there is an extra complexity and concentration spread around that you usually find in just the top wines. As luck may have it this amazing vintage has coincided with Songbird Wines working with two new Barbaresco producers, Albino Rocca and Oddero, that have made some exceptional wines.

Albino Rocca

The Rocca family have been cultivating Nebbiolo for over a century and produced their first own label Barbaresco in 1971. They own 18 hectares of vineyards with some vines dating back 70 years. Innovation and tradition work hand in hand here with ecologically friendly vineyards and aging in neutral oak to maximise the fruit character.

2016 Barbaresco Cottà, Albino Rocca @ £212 per case (6) IB

Mainly from 50 year old vines this is a superb effort. Incredibly forward with a nose of red cherry, cinnamon, clove it is a joy to take in the aromas. Beautifully ripe and concentrated this is irresistible now so if you are after instant gratification, this is for you!” Jonny Wren, Songbird Wines

  A nicely executed wine with linear and crisp aromatic details….This wine tastes great straight out of the gate” 94 points, Manica Larner, The Wine Advocate

2016 Barbaresco Ronchi, Albino Rocca @ £227 per case (6) IB

“From the limestone rich Ronchi cru of vines between 50-70 years old. This is offers vibrance and great concentration of red and dark fruit. Seductively perfumed with red and black cherry and a hint of fennel. More closed than the Cottà, this will reward the patient.” Jonny Wren, Songbird Wines

“Albino Rocca’s wines are characterised by beautifully pristine aromas and a seductive texture. In this example, I was arrested by a vibrant top note of intense redcurrant and violets and very juicy acidity: I love its brightness and intensity. It needs time but has fantastic potential.” 95 points, Susan Hulme MW, Decanter (May 2019)


Established in the late 18th century and now owning 35 hectares of vines this producer cultivates some of Piemonte’s most renowned wines. They began practicing organic vineyard management in 2009 and are one of the region’s ‘go to’ producers for exceptional value.

2016 Barbaresco Gallina, Oddero @ £212 per case (6) IB

“A refined perfumed nose of ripe red cherry, violets, roses and hint of white pepper. Very concentrated and intense on the palate with superb structure and great length. Outstanding value.” Jonny Wren, Songbird Wines

“Attractive, tight fruit nose with savoury, minerally notes. Youthful on the palate too. Fantastic balance and plentiful while not going overboard with the fruit. Contained power.” Walter Speller, 17.5 points, JancisRobinson.com

All wines have limited availability to please email jonny@songbirdwine.co.uk for more information

Cheers to a brilliant vintage!

Jonny Wren, Director

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