The Damilano family Barolo business dates back to 1890 when Giuseppe Borgogno, the great grandfather of the winery’s current owners, began to vinify his own estate wines. The town of Barolo resides in the generous and beautiful Langhe region, and its name was taken on by this “king of wines.”
It is with great passion that Giacomo Damilano, the founder’s son-in-law, developed with his children a love for the vineyards, selecting and maintaining them with great care in order to improve the quality of the wines. Over time, the winery’s production was transformed into a jewel that was passed down with pride to Giacomo’s grandchildren in 1997. They continue to manage the winery today.
Paolo, Mario and Guido Damilano, the fourth generation, have brought new vigor to the family business, strengthening and developing the extraordinary fruit which this land has to offer. Always looking forward, they continually seek innovations to further refine Damilano’s production.
2013 Damilano Arneis Langhe, $22.00
Arneis is one of the most common white varieties in Piedmont. This grape used to be blended with Nebbiolo to produce wines with a less aggressive character, hence, it is sometimes called ”white Barolo.” It was also once a common practice to plant a few Arneis vines among the more valuable Nebbiolo vines to ward off damage caused by birds and bees. Attracted by the sweetness and perfume of the Arneis, they would leave the Nebbiolo grapes alone. This wine has an unmistakable straw color and a dry, harmonious taste with moderate acidity. Pairs well with hors d’oeuvres, fish and white meats.
2012 Damilano Barbera d’Asti, $17.99
The production of Damilano’s Barbera d’Asti is the result of a recent lease agreement which allows the family to cultivate 42 acres of vineyards in Casorzo, located in the hills of Monferrato in the Asti province. This area is an historic cultivation zone for Barbera. The silt levels in the soil give the final wines a desirable softness. This 2012 has a floral nose with violets and light spice notes. Flavors of currant, cherry and vanilla persist nicely. Pairs well with first courses, red meats and aged cheeses.
2011 Damilano Nebbiolo Marghe, $20.00
Nebbiolo is the oldest and most noble native variety in Piedmont. It most likely takes its name from the Italian word for fog, “nebbia,” which is very common in the hills of Alba, especially in early to mid-October when this late-ripening variety is harvested. It is often called the “queen of black grapes.” This 100 percent Nebbiolo comes from 30 to 50 year old vines that benefit from the rich calcareous clay soil near the municipalities of Barolo and Grinzane Cavour. It has the varieties characteristic notes of violet and red fruit on the nose, with velvety dark fruit flavors. Longs to be paired with roasted red meats, game or aged cheese.
2010 Damilano Barolo Lecinquevigne, $41.00
This Barolo is crafted from Nebbiolo cultivated in five distinct townships. All part of the Barolo DOCG zone, the vineyards are located in Castellero, located northeast of the village of Barolo with western exposure; Monvigliero, located in Verduno with southern exposure; Fossati, located in La Morra with east-southeast exposure; Ravera, located in Novello with southwestern exposure; and Cavourrina, located in Grinzane Cavour with west-southwest exposure. The final wine is a unique expression of what the region has to offer. It is ready to drink now, but has the capacity to age for at least 10 years. Think grilled red meat or raw milk cheeses such as cheddar or aged provolone.
2001 Damilano Riserva Barolo, $68.00
Like the Lecinquevigne, this reserve bottling is sourced from several different townships and vineyards, with some of the best grapes going into the blend. It spends more time in oak (36 months, versus 24, 80 percent of which are new), and then again more time in the bottle before it’s released. The result is a Barolo with intense aromas of rose, leather, tobacco and violet. The palate is smooth and complex with a persistent finish.
2008 Damilano Barolo Liste, $68.00
A signature wine of Piedmont, this Barolo is made with grapes cultivated in the small, prestigious zone of Liste. The vineyard carries its 35 years well and enjoys ample sunshine from the east. Nebbiolo grown in this calcareous-clay soil gives a pure expression of the grape with its intense, garnet red color and orange highlights. Its nose is moderately intense with notes of wild fruit, licorice, tobacco and cocoa. On the palate it is dry and full-bodied with a velvety persistence that marries well with the great Piedmont culinary tradition. It is an ideal accompaniment to braised meats and truffle dishes.
We’ll be pouring the wines for our weekend tastings on October 3 & 4. Don’t forget the 3rd is First Friday, so we’ll be sampling from 4:00 to 6:30 in both the Wine Shop and the store, and you’ll save 15% that day on the featured Damilano Wines.
Also, we’ll have a very special visitor. Guido Damilano is flying in from his home in Italy to be at the First Friday Wine Shop tasting. A special opportunity to try some incredible wines and meet one of the driving forces behind them.