Appellation: Langhe D.O.P.
Grape varieties: 100% Cabernet Sauvignon
New Release: Balance, freshness and sweet fruit concentration are the benchmark of the 2016 vintage.
Angelo Gaja forever changed the world’s notion of Piedmont wines when he released this historic wine for the first time in 1985 (with the 1982 vintage), made from Cabernet Sauvignon grapes planted in the township of Barbaresco.
According to an oft-told legend, Angelo Gaja’s father exclaimed “darmagi!” upon learning that his son had planted Cabernet Sauvignon in vineyards previously devoted to Piedmont’s traditional Nebbiolo grape. Akin to the French quel dommage, the Piedmontese expression darmagi means what a pity! or what a shame!. With his characteristic respect for tradition and those who came before him, the younger Gaja decided to call this wine Darmagi, a homage to his family’s legacy with an eye toward the future.
Climate and harvest: The winter has been mild, with low level of rainfall during the months of January and February. Starting from the end of February 2016 the temperatures finally dropped and stayed low until the end of March. This late winter led to a delay of about 10 days in the bud breaking. The spring has been rainy and mild. During the summer, the temperature growing trend has been steady without any particular heat picks. There has only been a couple of hot weeks in July, with temperatures hovering above the 30° C but never exceeding the 35°C. In particular, the climate trend has been determined by remarkable temperature variations between days and nights during the last part of the growing season.
Flavor Profile: Wide bouquet that reveals itself little by little. Notes of cassis and quince, followed by tamarind and a fresh vegetal hint of tomato leaf in the finish. Velvety and juicy on the palate, with notes of black currant and fresh plum which lead to a spicy finish, as black pepper and cloves. 2016 Darmagi is very fruity, quite fleshy, but maintaining a great elegance.
Vineyards: Planted in 1978, Darmagi is Angelo Gaja’s tribute to the prestigious Cabernet sauvignon variety, and a clear sign of the peculiar Langhe expression in wines, even from non-traditional varieties.
Fermentation and Aging: Fermentation and maceration for around three weeks followed by ageing in oak for 24 months.
First vintage produced: 1982.