Region: Barbaresco, Piedmont
“ Alfredo and Luca Roagna, the fourth and fifth generations of a family of long-established Barbaresco grape growers and winemakers, are handcrafting fascinating, soulful Barbarescos and barolos of mesmerizing depth. Roagna’s Barbarescos, made from estate grapes grown in the heart of the village’s top crus, and their Barols, from their holdings in Castiglione-Falletto are earthy, structured wines with mindblowing complexity and exceptional character and are the result of ideally ripened Nebbiolo from prime vineyards coupled with scrupulous disdain for convention and a near-fanatical obsession with nature. The Roagnas are die-hard naturalists who truly live out the natural farming philosophy. The family’s Barbaresco vineyards are in the most protected parts of the most desired crus, including Asili, Crichet Paje, Paje and Montefico in Barbaresco; and Pira and Carso in the Barolo village of Castiglione Falletto. They turn the earth once in every 4 – 5 years, never use chemicals of any kind, never put down any fertilizer of any sort, not even organic. Their vineyards average fifty-five to sixty years old ”. Exerpt from BAROLO & BARBARESCO, King & Queen of Italian Wines by Kerrin O’Keefe
In 2009 Luca & his father Alfredo dug deep to build a new, capacious cantina/winery above their (Barolo) Pira vineyard, just below the castello of Castiglione Falletto. Here their Barolo is made, aged & bottled; meanwhile the Barbaresco wines are vinified & part aged in the original cantina above their Pajé vineyard in Barbaresco, before being transferred to Pira for part-ageing & bottling. The added space afforded by the new cantina in Pira seems to have imbued the wines with even more harmony & refinement. The old vineyards remain grassed-over & the harvests naturally late/at the perfect moment, even in Barbaresco. Vertical, 10 cm thick staved French quercus europea Tronco-conici botti are selected for (2/3 month) long maceration vinification, combined with hand-made, resin-lined cement tanks, followed by 5 years wood ageing, 8 for Crichët Pajé. Bottling takes place in August; total sulphur levels at 80 mg; free at 25. BTW, new to the cantina is a Timorasso from the village of Montemarzino, first harvested in 2014!
2009 Barbaresco Pajé
A perfect amphitheatre south-west facing vineyard bought in 1953, close to the Tanaro From their 45 year old vines below their Barbaresco cantina, & close to the Tanaro. The very prettiest of wines: kirsch violet creams, raspberry essence & that telltale soft, Pajé charm. Such clarity. Drinking even now but best from 2021 perhaps.