2017 De Forville, Dolcetto d’Alba, Piedmonte, Italy.
This dark fruited and brightly juicy 2017 Dolcetto by De Forville is a little gem of a wine that delivers a wonderful performance worthy of your attention for a grape that sometimes isn’t take as seriously as it should be. De Forville, mostly known for their value price and delicious Nebbiolo wines, especially their Barbaresco offerings, but this Dolcetto shouldn’t be overlooked, much in the same way you don’t want to miss G.D. Vajra’s outrageously good versions either. The De Forville family, according to the importer Rosenthal Wine Merchant, emigrated to Piedmont from Belgium in 1848 and established themselves in the village of Barbaresco in 1860 with Gioachino De Forville at the helm and who was obsessed with Nebbiolo, knowing its regal character was well suited to the terroir where he set of the estate. The current generation running the De Forville family estate are the brothers Valter and Paolo Anfosso, who have taken the wines to the next level. The well made and lovely Dolcetto d’Alba is an attractive purple/crimson wine of which De Forville says is limited to just 500 cases which is sent to the US market, ensuring there is some out there, but you’ll have to chase it down.
Like their also tasty Barbera d’Alba, the De Forville Dolcetto d’Alba is harvested from three separate parcels spread between the communes of Barbaresco and Neive, pretty much all Cru sites. The vines used on this one are an average age of 30 years, and are sustainably farmed. The Dolcetto gets a tank fermentation of approximately 10 days in stainless steel, then after primary is completed wine is racked into large oak “botti” for where it is aged for about six months, making for a fresh and easy to drink style of Italian country wine. This vintage is deeper than most, ripe in color and richness on the medium bodied palate with vivid layers of blackberry, tangy currant, juicy plum and black cherry fruits along with a crunchy mineral note and a mix of brambly spices and herbal essences with a touch of floral violets and a subtle bite of tannin and acidity. For those that are fans of Piedmonte and can’t drink Barolo or Barbesco everyday will be thrilled by this Dolcetto which should drink nicely for 3 to 5 years easy and is a solid value, best with rustic old world style cuisine.
($20 Est.) 90 Points, grapelive