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Compared to the Le Vigne, the 2013 Aleste is slightly deeper and richer. Coming all from the Cannubi Boschis vineyard and aged 18 months in 500-liter French oak, it reveals incredible notes of black currants, blackberries, ground herbs, licorice, and smoked tobacco. Possessing medium to full-bodied richness, a stacked mid-palate, and serious amounts of tannin, it’s an incredible wine, yet certainly not for those seeking instant gratification. Hide bottles for 5-6 years and enjoy over the following 2-3 decades."
98 Points Jeb Dunnuck
"The 2013 Barolo Aleste is a wine of striking purity and nuance. It is also one of the most finessed, vivid young Barolos I have ever tasted from Sandrone. The translucence of Nebbiolo comes through loud and clear. Freshly cut flowers, mint and finely cut fruit are some of the signatures. This wine has developed beautifully in recent vintages as the oak influence is less than it was just a few years ago. Beams of tannin and bright, salivating acidity add finesse to this translucent, exceptional Barolo. Aleste is the new name Sandrone is using for the Barolo formerly known as Cannubi Boschis."
97+ Points Vinous Media
"Formerly known as Barolo Cannubi Boschis (the last vintage by that name was 2012), the 2013 Barolo Aleste has been renamed to honor the youngest generation of the Sandrone family, Alessia and Stefano. The wine name Aleste takes the first three letters from each grandchild's name. The move represents the culmination of more than 50 harvests completed by this legendary winemaker and his desire to pass on the torch. His grandchildren are at different points in their respective viticulture and enology university studies. Now under a different name, the wine obviously shows the same delicate floral nuances that you get with this wine (fruit from Cannubi is always harvested first). This is a complete and exciting wine with delicate notes of wild berry and smoke backed by licorice and blue flower."
97 Points Wine Advocate
"Aleste is the new identity for Luciano Sandrone's Cannubi Boschis Barolo, bottled since 1985 and renamed in 2013 for this grandchildren, Alessia and Stefano. The end of the 2013 growing seas saw warm days and cool evenings that preserved freshness and heightened aromas; infact, half the pleasure ofAleste derives from the wine's gorgeous scents lavender, violet and anise. Strikingly pure flavors of ripe red berries thick-skinned plums are dappled with notes of thyme, sage and fennel, the flavors woven seamlessly together in a velvety texture. Those intense flavors gain momentum as the wine sits in the glass, following a vertical trajectory toward a long, vibrant finish.”
97 Points Wine & Spirits Magazine
"Well-structured, revealing dark fruit flavors of black cherry and black currant, with accents of iron, tobacco and tar. Has grip and a fresh feel, lingering on the licorice- and mineral-tinged finish. Best from 2020 through 2040."
94 Points Wine Spectator
ALESTE Barolo 2013 will be a particularly long-lived wine that needs patience. Its present structure makes this wine complete, but still very young: it will reach its optimal drinking period in 12 – 15 years.
ALESTE is the natural continuity of Luciano's first wine, the Barolo Cannubi Boschis, which garnered Luciano his early acclaim with the international trade and press. Giving all the experience, knowledge, patience and passion of his many harvests, Luciano pays tribute, with boldness and sensibility, to the next family generation: "ALESTE" is in fact the combination of the names of his grandchildren ALEssia and STEfano.
This single-vineyard wine is typically dense and concentrated, but shows incredible harmony and balance. The medium-weight structure shows delightful and seductive notes of berries and cherries, with floral and mineral aspects. In great vintages, properly cellared examples will drink well for 20+ years. The finish is sweet and broad, with moderate, ripe tannins and long length.
The vineyard is one the great cru sites in Barolo, synonymous with richness and complexity. Sandrone's Barolo Cannubi Boschis is grown in a specific sub-section of the Cannubi hill. Cannubi extends north from the village of Barolo and has been planted to Nebbiolo on its south and east exposures for at least a century. It runs approximately southwest-northeast and is entirely inside the commune of Barolo, from which it displays the characteristics of wines from this village: profound aromatic complexity and comparatively softer tannins in relation to vines grown in Monforte or Serralunga. The “Boschis” subzone of the Cannubi (also known, historically, as Monghisolfo) is near the northern end of the hill, and is located directly across the little valley from the Sandrone winery building. The Cannubi Boschis subzone has a particularly good exposure to the south and southeast in a small bowl or “conca” that helps hold the warmth in the early morning. Its soils are sea deposits of calcareous clay, not very deep, with good drainage.
Each lot of the vineyard is vinified separately, and after destemming and light crushing, the must is covered with CO2 for a gentle warm maceration of approximately a day. Alcoholic fermentation begins about 24-36 hours later from native yeasts. A gentle maceration takes place in upright open-top steel tanks for the first 9-10 days of alcoholic fermentation. Immediately after alcoholic fermentation, which takes 28-30 days, malolactic fermentation takes place in 500 liter French oak casks. The wine is aged in these casks for 24 months, followed by 18 months bottle aging. Around 800 cases are produced in a typical vintage.
Evolution of the vintage 2013 / Overall, it was a season characterized by a dual personality: after an initial cool and rainy phase, we had a second warmer and drier period that allowed the fruit to recover strongly and achieve highly satisfying results.
Even though the bud break took place during a period characterized by low temperatures and frequent rainfalls which made us fear a serious quality loss, by June the atmospheric conditions had markedly improved, and flowering happened under favorable conditions, resulting in a good fruit set.
The true turning point came in July with a period of stable weather. Warm and bright days into October helped the phenolic development. This allowed us to recover most of the disadvantages of the late spring. The cool nights of the last period of maturation helped develop the best characteristics of Nebbiolo, thus obtaining grapes of excellent quality.
In the end, we can say that the vineyard management was demanding, but by making the right choices according to the climate and soil conditions, and by optimal timing of the vineyard operations, we were certainly able to make a difference. Where crop and leaf thinning were performed at the right time and with the right methodology, grapes were obtained that made well-structured and long-lived wines and which made 2013 a particularly good year.