2019 Conterno Fantino, Barolo DOCG “Mosconi” Vigna Ped, Piedmonte, Italy.
The 2019 Mosconi Vigna Ped from Conterno Fantino is a brilliant young Barolo that is already showing its potential and has a gorgeous purity and depth, it was one of my personal favorites in a recent pre-sale tasting with some very serious Barolo and Barbaresco wines, it really was a standout Nebbiolo with classic flavors, depth and with a distinctive terroir driven character. I’d never had these Conterno Fantino wines before and was left very impressed, especially this one from the highly regarded Mosconi cru in the Monforte d’Alba area and from mature Nebbiolo vines that were planted between 1960 and 1999. The 2019 Mosconi Vigna Ped shows off a beautiful nose of dark roses, crushed berries, a touch of earth and spice, with a ripe, but structured, full bodied palate of black cherry, damson plum, bramble berry and currant fruits, accented nicely by tarry licorice, sandalwood, minty herbs, hoisin sauce, blood orange, mineral and sultry savory elements. There’s certainly a powerful force and grip in this Barolo just below the surface and the luxurious and concentrated mouth feel hides some of the serious tannin at this stage, making you want to enjoy this one right away, though I would advise allowing for 5 to 10 years of bottle age on this dark garnet and brick hued Mosconi Vigna Ped, that patience should pay off in rewarding fashion. The Mosconi cru’s organic Vigna Ped is a south facing parcel is close to 400 meters above sea level and set on sandy soils with depleted silt and clay marl, which sees a warm exposure, but gets cool nights, allowing for exceptional ripeness and balance, as this 2019 shows.

The Conterno Fantino winery was founded in 1982 by Claudio Conterno and Guido Fantino, bringing two famous Piedmonte families together, creating a tour de force estate focusing primarily in crafting exclusive small lot Barolo bottlings that are made with the utmost respect for the land and nature. To those goals, the vineyards, as the winery explains, are all organically cultivated (as certified by CCPB) with holistic and green methods, to give each wine their own natural identity. Conterno Fantino has taken big steps to reduce their environmental impact, and they in 2008 the winery expansion utilized various technical improvements with the aim of energy conservation, such as solar panels, a geothermal system and finally, the use of wetland specifically set up for wastewater purification. To highlight this and traditions, the grapes are all hand tended and harvested with the team carefully sorting each cluster, after which the winery says they, to preserve the aromas of the vineyard, a spontaneous fermentation with indigenous yeasts is employed (no commercial yeast is used here), with each vineyard site done separately. For aging, Conterno Fantino carefully selects the wood for the maturing of the wines and uses a minimal amount of added sulfites. This Mosconi Vigna Ped saw a maceration in stainless steel horizontal fermenters for 12-15 days before being pressed to barrel, all French oak, where it was rested for close to two years in wood and then another year or so in bottle. This impressive Barolo, that comes in at 14.5% natural alcohol, looks set for a long life ahead and I highly recommend it to Nebbiolo fans and those that can afford to put a few bottles away, this is stuff that will enjoy a long drinking window, maybe well into the 2030s!
($105 Est.) 95 Points, grapelive

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