G.D. Vajra - Albe Barolo 2019
“The Albe may be the single best value in Barolo today.” Antonio Galloni, Vinous
Tell us something we don't know, Antonio! Vajra's Barolo Albe is our top-selling Barolo of all time - and it isn't even close! Sales are more than 3 times the next selling Barolo. Heck, this Barolo is our top-selling wine from the entire Piedmont region of Italy. Not just in dollars, but in bottles, which is saying something when you consider all of the inexpensive Barbera we sell. Let's just take a quick peak at all of Italy... wow! #2 all-time by $ volume!!! That's incredible!
The 2013 vintage of Vajra Albe Barolo is off the charts for a sub $40 Barolo. Not only does it boast a glowing 93 point review from Wine Spectator… a 92 point score from Vinous Media… it was a huge hit in our recent Barolo tasting…and this was the least expensive to boot!!! For comparison, Wine Spectator reviews around 200 Barolos each vintage. Even in a great vintage like 2013, only TWO other wines scored 93+ and sold for less than $45.
So what's the secret? Well, for starters, the fruit for the Albe Barolo comes from three different vineyards Coste di Vergne, Fossati and La Volta, each with a different sun exposure and microclimate. This allows for the Vajra family to blend a wine that is consistently outstanding. Then, stylistically, they aim for a wine that is more approachable in youth than their single-vineyard offerings. But with the spectacular 2013 vintage, they may have made their finest yet! They've pulled back a little from the up-front ripeness and accessibility, crafting a wine that still has immediate appeal, but will give more reward with cellaring. Oh... let's say drink from 2021-2032.
Keep in mind that this is a highly regarded vintage that will reward those with the patience to hide some of these away for a few years. The 94 point rating for the vintage is tagged with the “T” for tannic. While this bodes well for the life expectancy of the wine, don’t be afraid to drink this now. I sure enjoyed it! Just give it a little air while you prep up your feast. A young Barolo like this is great with Brasato al Barolo. You really can’t go wrong with any beef or lamb, but a porcini risotto is a personal favorite that really brings out the subtleties of this beautiful bottle.
Francesca Vajra visits us at the store regularly. She has developed a loyal following in the area due to her delicious wines and her warm, welcoming personality. Make sure to visit us next time we host her for a tasting, it is always a delight!
G.D. Vajra Description
94 points Kerin O'Keefe
"Made from three separate vineyards, Fossati, La Volta and Coste di Vergne, this expressive Barolo opens with aromas of violet, dog rose and wild strawberry. Already drinking beautifully but showing good aging potential, the savory palate exhibits spiced cranberry, orange zest, red cherry and star anise alongside taut tannins and bright acidity. Drink 2025–2034."
Wine Enthusiast: 94 Points
"Stunning in its purity, freshness and vibrancy, the Albe Barolo from the venerable Vajra family is a beauty. Aromas of fresh cherries, wild strawberries, rose- buds, wild herbs, underbrush and subtle chalky notes waft from the glass. The generous palate showcases the tart red fruits Nebbiolo is known for, but at a higher gear followed by more savory flavors finishing with well-integrated tannins and vibrant acidity."
Wine Advocate: 94 Points
"This is certainly one of the most popular and versatile wines made in Italy, and deservedly so. The well-priced G.D. Vajra 2019 Barolo Albe shows some ripe fruit and softness with cherry, dried raspberry and crushed rose. This vintage is similar in character to the 2016 release in that both vintages offer a linear style with good structure at the back. The mouthfeel is polished and long, affording accessibility and complexity too."
James Suckling: 93 Points
"A firm and polished red with berries and spices, like nutmeg and pepper. Orange peel, too. Medium body. Fresh and energetic finish."
Jeb Dunnuck: 92 Points
"The 2019 Barolo Albe offers aromas of pressed roses, apricot, and tea leaf that are followed by a wine with great tension and balance, medium body, driving notes of orange citrus and dusty earth, and a clean finish. It is long and fresh on the palate. Best after 2024."
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All pricing and availability subject to change.
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