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Robert Parker Wine Advocate: 100 Points for GAJA Sperss 2016

Sperss NVMonica Larner of Robert Parker Wine Advocate has awarded an exceptional score of 100 points to GAJA Sperss 2016.

100 points
GAJA Sperss 2016
“The golden touch, that proverbial Gaja magic, is taken to a whole new level in the 2016 Barolo Sperss. Angelo Gaja has taught his children to follow their own path, and now that the generational switch is well underway at the family estate, we can see that Gaia, Rossana and Giovanni have done him proud. Very proud. This stunning expression from the 2016 vintage (with 16,000 bottles released) represents quite a few celebratory milestones. We are now in the fifth generation to protect the Gaja legacy in an unbroken family chain that has endured since 1859. This wine is 100% Nebbiolo, and since the 2013 vintage, it is part of the Barolo DOCG appellation. Winemaking has been tweaked to embrace a more elegant, ethereal and streamlined personality, instead of the bigger extraction we saw in the past. This upgraded identity is distinctly evident in this newest release of Sperss. Starting with appearance, the wine is luminous and bright with shiny ruby and garnet gemstone. Its aromatic reach is three-dimensional with width, height and depth. Delicate berry tones cede to pressed lilac, anise, sandalwood and cardamom spice. I double decanted and left the bottle open for a few hours before my tasting. The results are tight and gentle, and the wine shows beautiful vertical lift and intensity. To achieve this much power without the excess fruit weight is really quite an accomplishment. This is the magic of Nebbiolo, and the magic of Gaja.”

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Vinous: 100 Points for GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016

ST_DOP_NVAntonio Galloni of Vinous has awarded a perfect score of 100 points to GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016.

100 points
GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016


“The 2016 Barbaresco Sorì Tildìn is a fabulous, incredibly complete wine that soars out of the glass with explosive structure and vertical lift. The tannins are very much present, but also matched beautifully by the wine’s aromatic intensity and overall drive. Dark macerated cherry, spice, leather, licorice, plum and mocha add darker shades of nuance. In 2016, Sorì Tildìn is a bit more brooding and bigger than it often is, and yet all the elements are impeccably balanced. It is quite simply a majestic wine of real grandeur and total class, but it is not obvious. Sorì Tildìn will appeal most to readers who understand what the truest essence of Nebbiolo is all about. In a word: magnificent!”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 100 Points for GAJA Sperss 2015

Sperss NVJeb Dunnuck has awarded a perfect score of 100 points to GAJA Sperss 2015.

100 points
GAJA Sperss 2015

 

“The 2015 Barolo Sperss is another smoking good 2015 that shows the sunny warmth of the vintage in its massive bouquet of blackcurrants, kirsch liqueur, red plums, Asian spices, violets, and flowery incense. It reminds me of the incredible 1997, and Barolo doesn’t get any more sexy or opulent. This brilliant, full-bodied wine has ripe, velvety tannins, beautiful depth of fruit, and a great finish. It needs a solid hour in a decanter if drinking any time soon and will benefit from 5-7 years of bottle age. It should drink brilliantly over the following 25-30 years.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 99 Points for GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016

SSL_DOP_NV-2Jeb Dunnuck has awarded an exceptional score of 99 points to GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016.


99 points

GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016
“Another wine with a Burgundian silkiness (tannins this good can be hard to find in young Nebbiolo), the 2016 Barbaresco Sori San Lorenzo offers a more exotic bouquet of spiced red plums, licorice, dried herbs, rose petals, and flowery incense. This is a ripe, incredibly sexy, opulent Barbaresco that stays pure, ultra-refined, and elegant on the palate, with both tannins and acidity perfectly integrated. As with the Sori Tildin, it took plenty of air to show at its best, and despite offering incredibly pleasure today due to its balance and ripe tannins, it’s needs 5-7 years of bottle age and will cruise for 25 years or more.”

 

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Jeb Dunnuck: 98+ Points for GAJA Costa Russi 2016

CR_DOP_NVJeb Dunnuck has awarded an exceptional score of 98+ points to GAJA Costa Russi 2016.


98+ points

GAJA Costa Russi 2016
“The 2016 Barbaresco Costa Russi is a more floral, sappy Barbaresco, offering textbook notes of black cherries, rose petals, sappy herbs, and violets. It’s one of the more vibrant, juicy, and perfumed wines in the lineup and has medium to full body, bright yet integrated acidity, and the same incredibly polished yet certainly present tannins found in all these 2016s. This is another elegant 2016 that never puts a foot wrong.”

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Wine Enthusiast: 95 Points for GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016

ST_DOP_NVKerin O’Keefe of Wine Enthusiast has awarded 95 points to GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016.

95 points
GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016


“Red berry, exotic spice and a whiff of camphor form the enticing nose. Firmly structured but loaded with finesse, the linear palate delivers crunchy red cherry, pomegranate, star anise and white pepper alongside tightly knit, noble tannins. It’s still youthfully austere but already impeccably balanced, with vibrant acidity. Drink 2023–2041.”

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Wine Enthusiast: 98 Points for GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016

SSL_DOP_NV-2Kerin O’Keefe of Wine Enthusiast has awarded 98 points to GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016.


98 points

GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016
“Rose petal, camphor, eucalyptus and dark-skinned-berry aromas shape the nose on this captivating wine. Vibrant and intense, the palate evokes spiced cranberry, red cherry, licorice, espresso and a hint of orange zest alongside taut, fine-grained tannins. It’s still youthfully austere but already balanced, with firm acidity. Drink 2024–2041.”

 

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Wine Enthusiast: 95 Points for GAJA Costa Russi 2016

CR_DOP_NVKerin O’Keefe of Wine Enthusiast has awarded 95 points to GAJA Costa Russi 2016.


95 points

GAJA Costa Russi 2016
“Dark-skinned berry, coconut and balsamic aromas of eucalyptus shape the nose along with a whiff of rose petal. On the tense, youthfully austere palate, taut, fine-grained tannins and vibrant acidity support red cherry, cranberry, orange zest, brown pepper and a hint of tobacco. Give it time to fully develop. Drink 2024–2041.”

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Wine Enthusiast: 98 Points for GAJA Barbaresco 2016

Barbaresco NV_DOPKerin O’Keefe of Wine Enthusiast has awarded 98 points to GAJA Barbaresco 2016.


98 points

GAJA Barbaresco 2016
“Aromas of rose, red berry and eucalyptus mingle with whiffs of exotic spice on the gorgeous, fragrant red. Loaded with finesse and tension, the elegant, structured palate delivers crushed raspberry, white pepper and star anise set against fresh acidity and taut, lithe tannins. It’s already compelling, but hold for even more complexity. Drink 2022–2036.”

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Wine Spectator: 97 Points for GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016

SSL_DOP_NVBruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 97 points to GAJA Sorì San Lorenzo 2016.


97 points

Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo 2016
“Features sweet ripe cherry, plum, eucalyptus, tobacco, and spice flavors. The texture is tightly woven and refined, while vibrant acidity drives the long finish. Shows wonderful harmony and the potential for aging. Best from 2023-2045.”

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Wine Spectator: 97 Points for GAJA Costa Russi 2016

CR_DOP_NVBruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 97 points to GAJA Costa Russi 2016.


97 points

Barbaresco Costa Russi 2016
“This delicate red features floral, strawberry, cherry, currant and loamy earthy aromas and flavors. A line of firm tannins adds supports and the finish is long and expansive. Shows terrific balance. Best from 2023-2045.”

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Wine Spectator: 95 Points for GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016

ST_DOP_NVBruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 95 points to GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016.

95 points
GAJA Sorì Tildìn 2016

“Supple and concentrated, delivering cherry, strawberry, iron, tobacco, and loamy earth flavors. Gets silkier and more graceful, playing out on the long finish. Shows excellent harmony and complexity.”

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James Suckling Awards GAJA & Ca’ Marcanda Eight-93+ Point Ratings

Influential wine critic and Italian wine specialist James Suckling has recognized GAJA and Ca’ Marcanda with exceptional scores of 93-99 points.

99 points:
GAJA Sorí San Lorenzo 2016
“Glorious aromas of ripe strawberries, cherries and orange peel with flowers and stones and some incense. Full-bodied, dense and powerful with fantastic depth of fruit and ripe tannins. It goes on for minutes. One of the most structured Sori San Lorenzo’s in a long time.” – James Suckling
** #26 on James Suckling’s Top 100 Wines of Italy 2019 List **

98 points:
GAJA Conteisa 2015
“Extremely pure fruit on the nose here with aromas of plums and strawberries and hints of cedar and rose petals, as well as rose stems. Full body. Very tannic and structured, yet polished and refined. Dusty and stony undertones and textures. Drink after 2021.” – James Suckling
** #34 on James Suckling’s Top 100 Wines of Italy 2019 List **

97 points:
GAJA Costa Russi 2016
“Beautiful dried strawberries, flowers and cedar with hints of tar. Full body, round and rich tannins with lots of cedar, tar and tobacco, as well as a hint of chocolate powder. Lovely, long and caressing finish. Gorgeous again. Better after 2022.” – James Suckling

95 points
GAJA Sorí Tildín 2016
“Extremely perfumed aromas of dried flowers, dried strawberries and pumice, as well as tar, following through to a full body, with chewy and polished tannins and a long, juicy finish. Quite broad tannins. Dusty texture. Drink after 2021.” – James Suckling

97 points:
GAJA Sperss 2015
“Very ripe strawberry and cherry aromas with undertones of flowers and cedar. Hints of fresh leather, too. Full body and round, soft tannins with lots of intensity at the finish. Round and fruity, yet always reserved. Needs time to come completely together. Better after 2022.” – James Suckling

96 points
GAJA Barbaresco 2016
“This is all about finesse with power. Such great length here with ever so refined tannins and precise strawberry, cedar, dried-rose and mineral character. Medium body. Fresh and vivid finish. Hard not to drink now, but wait until at least 2021.” – James Suckling

94 points:
Ca’ Marcanda Camarcanda 2016
“Fragrant florals punctuate the nose, ranging from lavender to hyacinth, and there are hints of heather and thyme, too. Citrusy undertones abound. There’s a profundity to the center palate, which is decked out in sheets of dark fruit-flavored, muscular tannins that retain a telltale elegance, as they envelop the peripheries of the mouth. Long and mineral, this is a delightful wine now and will continue to open up as the years go by. Drink from 2023.” – James Suckling

93 points
Ca’ Marcanda Promis 2017
“This is an inviting, colorful red with tea-tree oil, blueberries, violets and lavender. Hints of fresh herbs. Taut, fluid and zesty, it is finely sliced into grippy portions of tannins that sandwich elegant flavors of dark fruit interlaced with carefully tuned acidity. Drink now or hold.” – James Suckling

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Wine Spectator: 95 Points for GAJA Sperss 2015

Sperss NVBruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 95 points to GAJA Sperss 2015.

95 points
GAJA Sperss 2015

“A broad, powerful style, full of well-defined plum, cherry, licorice, leather, iron, and tobacco flavors. The smooth texture adds refinement. Exhibits refinement despite the breadth, The fine, lingering aftertaste picks up elements of wild herbs and spices.”
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Barbaresco DOCG

Barbaresco
Appellation: Barbaresco DOCG
Grape variety: 100% Nebbiolo

The centerpiece of the portfolio, GAJA Barbaresco is a testament to the Gaja family’s historic commitment to the appellation and its belief that Barbaresco stands proudly with the great growing regions of the world.

The GAJA winery stopped sourcing fruit from other growers in 1961 in order to ensure the utmost quality in its wines. In the early 1960s, Giovanni Gaja began to expand the family’s land holdings, and in 1967, he purchased the renowned Roncagliette farm, where much of the fruit for this wine is sourced today.

In all, GAJA Barbaresco is produced using grapes grown in 14 vineyards in the village of Barbaresco. The grapes from each lot are fermented separately in stainless-steel vats for approximately 20 days, depending on the vintage. After primary fermentation, the wine is racked to barriques, where malolactic fermentation takes place. The separate lots are then aged for one year in barriques (20 percent new, with a balance of 1- and 2-year-old casks). The 14 lots are then blended and racked to large Slavonian oak casks ranging in age from five to fifteen years.

It is important to note the unique bottle shape created by the GAJA winery for this classic wine. The rich, powerful GAJA Barbaresco is intended for aging and thus benefits from a longer cork — and, in 1978, GAJA became the first winemaker in Piedmont to make that change. In order to accommodate the new format (originally 61 millimeters, now 55 millimeters), GAJA redesigned the traditional Burgundian-format bottle used in Piedmont, creating a hybrid bottle with a long Bordelaise neck and Burgundian bottle.

new-terlato-logo

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Jeb Dunnuck: GAJA Barolo Sperss 2015 Honored as a Top Wine of 2020

In addition to awarding GAJA Barolo Sperss 2015 a perfect score of 100 points, Jeb Dunnuck ranked it #43 on his list The Top Wines of 2020.


“The 2015 Barolo Sperss is another smoking good 2015 that shows the sunny warmth of the vintage in its massive bouquet of blackcurrants, kirsch liqueur, red plums, Asian spices, violets, and flowery incense. It reminds me of the incredible 1997, and Barolo doesn’t get much more sexy or opulent. This brilliant, full-bodied wine has ripe, velvety tannins, beautiful depth of fruit, and a great finish. It needs a solid hour in a decanter if drinking any time soon and will benefit from 5-7 years of bottle age. It should drink brilliantly over the following 25-30 years.”

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Jeb Dunnuck Reviews New Releases from GAJA

Jeb Dunnuck has published a special report reviewing the new releases from GAJA.

Highlights from Dunnuck’s report include:

“This article looks at the new releases from the Gaja family and includes their flagship Barbaresco and Barolo releases as well as their releases from Pieve Santa Restituta and Ca’Marcanda.”

“Looking at the Gaja releases, these come mostly from the 2017 vintage, which was a challenging, scorching hot year that made reaching full phenolic ripeness difficult. The 2017s possess lighter colors, more streamlined textures, and present, firm tannins.”

“I was also able to taste their 2016 Barolo Sperss, which is always released after their single vineyard Barbaresco. This beauty comes from a more even, classic year and offers everything you could want: Incredible aromatics, thrilling richness, perfect balance, and a majestic, layered, seamless profile that is impossible to resist. In this reviewer’s opinion, the 2016 Sperss is a legendary Barolo in the making.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 100 Points for GAJA Barolo Sperss 2016


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 100 points to GAJA Barolo Sperss 2016

100 points 
GAJA Barolo Sperss 2016

“As with the 2015, the 2016 Barolo Sperss is a perfect wine. Deep ruby-hued, it boasts a gorgeous perfume of cherry and blueberry-like fruits that are interwoven with notes of tobacco, violets, crushed stone, and licorice. This carries to a magical, full-bodied, powerful wine revealing flawless tannins, off-the-charts purity, and a finish that just about won’t quit. From an incredible vintage for Piedmont, this has everything: awesome purity of fruit, power without weight, building yet ultra-fine tannins, notable freshness, and the class to drink well today yet age gracefully for 30-40 years.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 95+ Points for Gaja Barbaresco 2017


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 95+ points to Gaja Barbaresco 2017.

95+ points 
Gaja Barbaresco 2017

“A pretty, perfumed example of this cuvee, the 2017 Barbaresco offers lots more red fruits as well as spice, dried flowers, incense, and loamy soil. With more licorice and minerality emerging with time in the glass, it hits the palate with medium-bodied richness, an elegant texture, plenty of firm tannins, and a great finish. It doesn’t get more textbook Nebbiolo than this. This classic beauty is going to benefit from 5-7 years of bottle age and have 2-3 decades of longevity.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 95 Points for Gaja Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo 2017


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 95 points to Gaja Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo 2017.

95 points 
Gaja Barbaresco Sorì San Lorenzo 2017

“Also light ruby hued (all of the 2017s are on the lighter hued side), the 2017 Barbaresco Sori San Lorenzo comes from a warmer terroir and was brought up in barrel. It has beautiful red fruits as well as complex notes of spring flowers, spice, and menthol. Playing in the elegant, seamless end of the spectrum, with impressive tannins, it has slightly more concentration compared to the Sori Tilden (which is normal for this cuvée) yet it still shows the more streamlined, elegant style shared by all the 2017s from Gaja. This beautiful, nuanced, complex Barbaresco needs 5-6 years of bottle age and will keep for 20+ years.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 95 Points for Gaja Barbaresco Sorì Tildìn 2017


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 95 points to Gaja Barbaresco Sorì Tildìn 2017.

95 points 
Gaja Barbaresco Sorì Tildìn 2017

“Light ruby hued, the 2017 Barbaresco Sori Tildin is a nuanced, elegant Barbaresco offering lots of beautiful red and subtle blue fruits intermixed with notes of wildflowers, licorice, asphalt, tobacco, and dried spices. Aromatic, incredibly perfumed, and already complex, it hits the palate with medium to full-bodied richness, ultra-fine tannins, and a lengthy, seamless finish that carries plenty of salinity and freshness. It’s not a blockbuster, but it excels on its purity, freshness, and elegance, and it certainly has enough tannins for a long life. It didn’t show at its best until day two, so if you’re opening bottles any time soon, a healthy decant is recommended. It will ideally be given 5-7 years of bottle age to hit its early drink window and should evolve for 20+.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 94 Points for Gaja Barbaresco Costa Russi 2017


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 94 points to Gaja Barbaresco Costa Russi 2017.

94 points 
Gaja Barbaresco Costa Russi 2017

“Falling in between the Sori Tildin and Sori San Lorenzo stylistically, the 2017 Barbaresco Costa Russi offers a ripe bouquet of mulled cherry and blackberry fruits intermixed with lots of balsamic, licorice, loamy soil, dried spices, and a touch of asphalt. This carries to a medium to full-bodied, elegant Barbaresco with broad, mouth-coating tannins, a solid core of acidity, and a great finish. As with all of these wines, it need lots of air to shed some austerity and pick up more sweetness in its tannins (which can be common for hot vintages) and is going to benefit from 4-6 years of bottle age and have two decades of prime drinking.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 94 Points for Gaja Darmagi 2017


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 94 points to Gaja Darmagi 2017.

94 points 
Gaja Darmagi 2017

“While a base Langhe release, the 2017 Darmagi is stunning stuff, offering a killer bouquet of ripe red and black fruits, hot asphalt, spring flowers, tobacco, and a touch of rocky, earthy minerality. With a rich, medium to full-bodied mouthfeel, a more supple, upfront style, and sweet tannins, it already offers loads of pleasure, yet its solid spine of tannins and acidity make me believe it will still be drinking nicely in 15-20 years.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 93 Points for Gaja Langhe Gaia & Rey 2018


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 93 points to Gaja Langhe Gaia & Rey 2018.

93 points 
Gaja Langhe Gaia & Rey 2018

“Named after Lucia and Angelo Gaja’s daughter, Gaia Gaja, and Angelo’s granmother, Clotilde Rey, the 2018 Langhe Gaia & Rey (100% Chardonnay) offers a richer, layered, medium-bodied style that carries beautiful stone fruits, white flowers, salty minerality, and a touch of honeysuckle. Nicely textured and balanced, with both richness and freshness, this outstanding Chardonnay should continue drinking nicely for another 5-7 years.”

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Jeb Dunnuck: 91 Points for Gaja Langhe Alteni Di Brassica 2018


Jeb Dunnuck
has awarded a score of 91 points to Gaja Langhe Alteni di Di Brassica 2018.

91 points 
Gaja Langhe Gaia & Rey 2018

“Based on Sauvignon Blanc, the 2018 Langhe Alteni Di Brassica has a beautiful, classic Sauvignon nose of crushed citrus, white grapefruit, lemon zest, and honeyed minerality. More supple, textured and fruit-forward than the 2017, yet still with racy acidity and a steely, bright personality, it’s another medium-bodied, beautifully balanced white in this lineup that has loads to love.”