Our Favourite producer of Barolo is Back!
Marengo is one of the smallest estates in La Morra, but Marco Marengo (centre) has no inferiority complex. He turns out some of the finest and purest wines in the Langhe. He’s famous for Pinot Noir-esque Baroli, sourced from the magnificent Brunate and Viole vineyards. Marengo is privileged to be among the many more famous names who own vineyards in the “Brunate” Cru, an immaculately positioned parcel of land that is considered to be one of the Grand Crus of the Langhe. The estate makes tiny quantities of modern-style Barolo from old vines and in great years, these particularly well-balanced, ample, intense, tannic wines are the most stylish and characterful wines in the region.
This is a unique estate: it was established by the Marengo family in 1899 – the vineyard extension is just 6 hectares, but 1 hectare is in Le Brunate, a grand cru of La Morra (and one of the greatest crus of the Langhe area) and 0.90 hectares are in Bricco delle Viole, one of the main crus of the town of Barolo. These two plots have belonged to the Marengo family for three generations.
We have many fans of these wines at J. Webb but like so many great wines, they are made in tiny amounts. The entire production is less than 2,000 cases for all 3 Barolos. So if you love Barolo as much as we do, come and taste these with us this weekend. (Also for those seeking out the single vineyard wines … we’ll have them open at Glenmore Landing on Friday and Saturday. See you there!)
2016 Marengo Dolcetto – Piedmonte, Italy $27.95
I often joke that I don’t really like Dolcetto, but somehow I love this wine. There is a complexity here and a softer more subtle texture that draws you to in. It’s dark and spicy and delivers serious satisfaction for $28. This is also my go-to wine for pizza when it’s in the shop. – Kevin M.
2015 Marengo Barbera – Piedmonte, Italy $36.95
Barbera is a mysterious grape, one I don’t know if I’ll ever get my head around. Most examples are made in a modern style where the emphasis is on big fruit, dark colour, richness and power. But not those of Marco Marengo. He has the confidence to craft his in a more elegant style and the result is stunning. This is more like Pinot Noir in many ways, it’s nuanced, ever changing and very fine. The aromas are spectacular with dark cherry and fall leaves. I love this wine and each time I drink it, I find something new. – Kevin M.
2013 Marengo Barolo – Piedmonte, Italy $59.95
This is a serious class act and 2013 may be our favourite vintage to date. Here you have the lovely floral notes alongside bright red cherry and perfect balance on the palate. This has some lovely structure to age but somehow these wines remain delicious in youth. For the collectors out there, this will go 10 years easily and the single vineyard wines (Brunate and Bricco will continue to evolve for 15+) – Kevin M.