Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Boasso and the Gabutti cru

It was one of those perfectly sunny days in Serralunga.

Mr. Boasso came over to greet us. He carries with him the hands of a farmer. Big, giant, powerful hands.

We were also greeted by THE OFFICIAL WELCOMER OF THE BOASSO FAMILY, who spent a good deal of time talking to us and making sure we had everything she needed.

Boasso is closely associated with the Gabutti cru, which is right nearby the winery.

Gabutti is a big ol' vineyard. Cappellano, who also gets grapes from here, has vines near the bottom.

The top of the Gabutti cru. Mr. Boasso is building the house at the top for his son-in-law.

Last year's Gabutti harvest has made its way inside the cellar.

Boasso also makes a generalized Serralunga Barolo, and since 2003 there is a cru bottling from the Serralunga vineyard of Margheria.

Mr. Boasso tells us about the new provisional legislation regarding how crus can be labelled on a bottle. As the rulings stand now, it may no longer be allowed for a single winery to bottle two different grape varieties as coming from the same vineyard. So if you have Barbera and Nebbiolo planted in the same vineyard you could choose to have the vineyard name on the Barolo bottle or on the Barbera bottle, but you couldn't have it on both. Also, if you purchased grapes or wine from another grower, you could not use the associated cru name on the final bottle. You would have to use the generalized commune name instead.

Apparently, these changes are subject to appeal at the moment, but they still seemed like huge news to me. Think about it: Cascina Francia Barbera or Cascina Francia Barolo, but not both. And if I buy your grapes from Rionda I can't call my Barolo Rionda, I can only call it Barolo Serralunga. That implies large ramifications if the legislations passes as is. It seems like the prices asked for grapes sold from prestigious crus could only go down without the possibility of attaching the name. I guess we'll see what happens.

Mr. Boasso also tells us that in his opinion, 2007 is a pretty lousy year for Barolo, and in fact he doesn't even show us his 2007s, opting instead for 2006s and 2004s. One gets the sense that Boasso wines need a bit of time, so there is probably some logic to this.

"Let me tell you something about good wine" says Mr. Boasso, "if you want to make good wine you had better not say a lot, because nobody knows a lot. I've been doing this for 40 years, and in wine 2 plus 2 never equals 4. I am careful not to throw away tradition, and I know that wine is made in the vineyard."

If you haven't had a Boasso Gabutti with some age on it and a roast leg of lamb, I would recommend that you do that for yourself next winter. The Serralunga sun will warm you right up.

1 comment:

Seth said...

Wow. Big news, indeed.

Thanks for the pictures of Gabutti.