LA SPINETTA
Piedmont

LA SPINETTA

Piedmont

“I can’t remember a single meal with my father, my mother, my brothers and sister, our cousins, when there wasn’t a bottle of Barbera or Nebbiolo on the table, usually there were couple. And these wines continue to represent for me family, memories, laughter, tradition” says Giorgio Rivetti, co-owner and head wine maker of LA SPINETTA.

“My parents were Moscato producers and I have always been convinced that Moscato merits the same respect in the vineyard as even the most prestigious wines like Barolo and Barbaresco. So my brothers and I decided to make single vineyard Moscato d’Asti. 

I’ve been told that we were the first producer to name our Moscato after the vineyard, a tradition which was only used then for expensive reds. But great Moscato is great wine, something special, something elegant and beautiful and it demands the maximum respect. The vineyard Bricco Quaglia is still today one of the best areas to grow Moscato, it’s something extraordinary.”

Giorgio recounts his first vintage of Barolo: “the other Barolo producers came over very concerned as they couldn’t believe how few grapes I had left on the vines; they thought I was crazy and throwing away money. But I knew from the start the kind of quality that I wanted in all my wines. And nothing has changed since.”

“I like to think of myself as traditional, open to innovation and new ideas, but fundamentally rooted in tradition. I’m Piemontese, after all” laughs Giorgio. “This is why I love Barbera. I love Nebbiolo. These are our food wines, the wines I still drink with my family and friends, every day.”

Giorgio Rivetti’s magic touch with Moscato, Barbera, and Nebbiolo has taken the wine world by storm. He produces approachable yet age-worth wines that command the attention of wine critics and consumers alike, year-in and year-out; their lushness, concentration, aromatics and length are unrivaled. Giorgio’s speedy ascent, from Moscato producer in the 1970’s, to venerated Barbaresco and Barolo vigneron today, is studded with success.

The genius of La Spinetta encompasses a vast array of great wines, all boasting an inimitably approachable and voluptuous style. From Moscato to Nebbiolo to Sangiovese, whatever Giorgio touches turns to gold. His pioneering single-vineyard Barberas and Barbera/Nebbiolo blend Pin are considered to be the best of the Langhe. His Barbarescos and Barolo are at the very top of their category. In fact, La Spinetta’s wines are among Italy’s most celebrated, as the winery has attained the coveted “Tre-Bicchieri” award for more than 30 of their wines throughout their relatively short career. Let it never be said, however, that the greatness of La Spinetta is inaccessible to the average consumer; from the longtime favorite Barbera d’Asti “Ca di Pian,” featured in numerous magazines as a Best Value, to the Langhe Nebbiolo, a bottling of young-vine fruit from the famed Starderi vineyard in Barbaresco, La Spinetta offers incredible opportunities to experience the beauty of La Spinetta’s best crus at a fraction of the cost.

Campè, Grinzane Cavour, Piedmont

The Campè winery in Grinzane Cavour was established on the 8 hectares of Nebbiolo vineyards of the same name and represents the evolution of the LA SPINETTA production in respect to the great red wines of Piedmont. Though the vineyard is situated in an area that is less well-known for Barolo production, the soil, vineyard exposure and microclimate are extraordinary. The average age of the vines in the Campè is 45 – 60 years. Barolo Campè is vinified from the grapes coming from the upper part of the vineyard, while Barolo Garretti is produced from Nebbiolo planted in the lower portion.

La Spinetta purchased the 8 hectares of vineyard in 2000 and less than 3 years, later, in 2003, the new, state-of-the-art Barolo cellar was finished. In addition to our Barolo wines, our Barbera d’Alba Gallina and Langhe Nebbiolo are also produced here.

The very best selection of Barolo Campè is bottled exclusively in magnum and released as a Riserva, 10 years after harvest. The grapes for the Riserva Magnum come from the finest part of the Campè vineyard, in the upper center, where the vines not only get the best sun exposure, but also where all work is carried out without the use of tractors. Workers ten the vineyard on foot and manually and twice-a-year plowing is carried out by Giorgio and one of his work horses, either Morro or Pipo.

Castagnole Lanze, Piedmont

Castagnole is La Spinetta’s original cellar, located in the Asti area northwest of Alba. Surrounded by 70 hectares of Moscato and Barbera d’Asti vineyards, this is the place where La Spinetta was founded in 1977.

The Rivettis remodeled and expanded the cellar and winery in the mid-1980s. Though more modern in style, cathedral ceilings and an open space characterize the impressive barrique cellar. The original barrel room was once used as the tasting room, but a new space was added in 2010.

Today La Spinetta’s Castagnole Lanze cellar is the heart of Moscato, Barbaresco and Barbera Ca di Pian production, though other wines such as Lidia Chardonnay, Langhe Bianco, Pin, and Barbera d’Asti Superiore Bionzo are also vinified here.

“We are farmers” says Giorgio Rivetti. “That means first and foremost, we respect the land, we don’t kill it using chemicals or over-produce. We work with our hands, not machines, organically, patiently. This is the only way I know how to make wine.”

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Wines

Moscato D’Asti Bricco Quaglia DOCG

Along with the Biancospino, Bricco Quaglia was the first single-vineyard Moscato wine in Italy.  This is a sweet and seductive wine with lush aromas of crisp green apple and honeysuckle.  A full and juicy Moscato filled with fruity flavors of pear and peaches and a hint of sweet caramel.  This is a deliciously sweet wine, perfect for any occasion.

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Moscato D’Asti Biancospino DOCG

The Moscato Biancospino is lively and pure with aromas of ripe yellow apple, tangerine, lemon ice and sweet spices.  A gentle, inviting mousse and flavors of fresh citrus, sage and minerals linger on the floral and long back end, making this traditionally dessert wine an ideal choice for an aperitif or a refreshing brunch beverage as well. 

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Moscato Passito Oro DOC

The Moscato grapes for the Oro are left to dry in the cellar until the end of December, followed by alcoholic and malolactic fermentation and an additional two years aging in new French oak barrels.  The result is virtually liquid gold (“Oro” in Italian), a luscious wine with intense, pure aromas of grapefruit skin, honeysuckle, crystallized ginger, aromatic herbs and honey.  Juicy, precise and penetrating, succulent yet firm flavors of lemon, thyme, vanilla, ripe citrus and pear are accented by maple syrup and spice.  This is a dense, luscious, rich Moscato wine that pairs nicely with chocolate desserts and rich cheeses.

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Langhe Bianco DOC

100% Sauvignon Blanc, planted at 500 meters (1,640 feet) above sea level in sandy soil, this fresh white is bursting with bright aromas of green pear, yellow plum, sea salt and a whole garden of fresh herbs (particularly sage).  Alcoholic and malolactic fermentations are carried out in 200L French oak casks, enhancing the wine’s concentration and structure.  A delicious savory note, accompanied by a gripping minerality and acidity, make this a great food wine.

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Lidia Chardonnay Piemonte DOC

The Chardonnay Lidia is produced according to a Burgundian blueprint, seeking freshness and minerality and always keeping the alcohol in check, never above 13.5%.  From the same high-altitude vineyard site as the Sauvignon, after primary and malolactic fermentations in oak, the Chardonnay spends an additional year aging in a combination of large casks and neutral barriques.  Though crafted to withstand some cellaring, the Lidia is creamy and layered even at a young age, with exotic fruit aromas of pineapple and peach and enticing mineral nuances.  Finishes rich and dry with a hint of butterscotch and subtle lingering fruit. 

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Barbera D’Asti Ca di Pian DOCG

Though the Barbera grape from Asti usually tends to be crisper and sharper (when compared to the Barbera grape from Alba), the Ca’ di Pian exudes a rich concentration and relatively tame acidity, thanks to 45-year-old vines and low vineyard yields.  Aromas of blueberry, wet earth and a hint of orange peel come through, and this Barbera’s full body and intensity are balanced by a silky smooth finish, combining richness with finesse.

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Barbera D’Asti Superiore Bionzo DOCG

The Bionzo is a big, concentrated, dense Barbera produced from old vines in Costigliole d’Asti.  Nearly 18 months in oak (plus six in stainless steel and bottle), delivers an incredibly rich, structured wine with a plethora of perfumes including black cherry, cassis, gravel, smoke, chocolate, liquorice and menthol.  Broad and silky with an incredibly depth of flavor, the characteristic richness of the Bionzo complements its acidity, finishing with smooth, slightly oaky tannins and a whole range of dark spices.  This isn’t your average Barbera, this is a wine that will continue to evolve for 20-25 years. 

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Barbera D’Alba Gallina DOC

This gorgeous Barbera comes from the small (10 acres) south-facing Gallina vineyard in Neive. This is a supple, dense and racy wine, with no hard edges and tons of concentration. Generous aromas of dark raspberry jam, blueberry, mocha, shaved dark chocolate, spice and new leather fill out nicely in a creamy, generous Barbera that expresses the natural, almost feminine, silkiness and character that make this wine so unique.

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Langhe Nebbiolo DOC

The Langhe Nebbiolo is mostly young-vine fruit from the Starderi vineyard from which the Cru Barbaresco is produced.  Racy and layered, this wine offers a beguiling mix of bright red cherry and blueberry fruit and floral, spiced, minty notes that add perfume.  Full-bodied and rich, yet pretty and expressive, this is an excellent Nebbiolo to enjoy quite young though it can certainly withstand some time in the cellar as well.

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Pin Monferrato Rosso DOC

Named in honor of La Spinetta founder Giuseppe “Pin” Rivetti, this Nebbiolo/Barbera blend is supple and silky with an alluring aromatic presence of dark berries, shaved chocolate and hints of leather.  The wine opens with the approachability and fruity appeal of Barbera, but continues with the length and elegance of Nebbiolo, each grape perfectly complimenting the other.  Enjoyable early, but will also evolve nicely after a few years in the cellar.

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Barbaresco Bordini DOCG

In 2006 Giorgio Rivetti purchased 4 hectares (10 acres) plot directly from the last of the Bordini family, who farmed the vineyard for over 300 years. Bordini is located adjacent to the Starderi vineyard on its western corner and it is exclusively plated to the Nebbiolo grape. The vines are 20-25 year old growing in the calcareous soils at 270 meters above sea level (885 feet). Barbresco Brodini ages for 20-22 months in oak barriques yielding an elegant and floral Barbaresco representative of La Spinetta style.

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Barbaresco Gallina DOCG

A gorgeous wine, vivid and nuanced with sensual aromas of redcurrant, plum, earth, herbs, spices and flowers (rose petals, lavender).  On the palate, this top Barbaresco reveals a round, dense texture with a classically dry finish and ripe tannins that dust the front teeth.  Sometimes a bit shy at first, Gallina is often considered the most age-worthy of the three top La Spinetta Barbaresco wines, truly blossoming after a bit of time in the cellar.  This pretty wine has an aging potential of at least 25-30 years and is ideal paired with grilled food, and rich meat dishes.

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Barbaresco Gallina Riserva DOCG (Magnum)

As for the other magnum Riservas, grapes for the Barbaresco Riserva Gallina magnum come exclusively from the highest part of the Gallina vineyard, an ideal location for the sustainably-farmed vines, free of pesticides, herbicides and any heavy machinery that might interfere with the purity of the vineyard and grapes.  The bouquet of this exclusive wine is dense and velvety, loaded with chocolate, berries and spice.  In the mouth, the wine is tense and full-bodied with a beautiful blueberry, spice and mineral character.  Polished and chewy tannins give way to a long and flavorful finish.  Released 10 years after harvest.

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Barbaresco Starderi DOCG

The Starderi represents another top Barbaresco wine in the La Spinetta line-up, from the Starderi vineyard in Nieve.  Elegant, refined aromatics of red-toned fruit, flowers and mint integrate with firm acidity and serious tannins, providing a sound structural backbone to the wine.  Aged in new, medium-toast French barriques, the oak will fully integrate with time, as will the youthful tannins.  This is a sophisticated and concentrated Barbaresco whose bright citrus and floral notes add a finishing touch and give something to look forward to.   

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Barbaresco Starderi Riserva DOCG (Magnum)

Released 10 years after harvest, the Starderi Riserva magnum is once again the best expression of the Starderi vineyard, crafted from carefully tended 40-60-year-old vines.  An intense, vibrant red color, beautiful aromas of dried fruit and flowers follow through to reveal dark fruits like blackberry and plum and sweet spices of cloves and vanilla.  This is a powerful, rich wine with a full body and chewy tannins and a long, intense finish.  

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Barbaresco Valeirano DOCG

This is a precise and finely cut Barbaresco, exhibiting the most austere personality of the three La Spinetta Barbaresco wines, typical of this cru in Treiso.  The vineyard is quite high for Barbaresco at 450 meters (1,476 feet) above sea level and faces entirely south.  The Valeirano is a wine of tremendous energy and intensity with shades of dark cherry, sweet spice, crushed flowers, leather, mint, truffle and tobacco (perfumes reminiscent of Barolo), adding dimension to this already potent wine.  Substantial tannins are softened by a touch of sophistication, a wine to watch in the future.

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Barbaresco Valeirano Riserva DOCG (Magnum)

The Riserva Valeriano magnum is a result of the utmost attention to the best grapes in the Valeriano vineyard, released after 10 years in the La Spinetta cellar.  Though often considered the more austere of the Barbaresco vineyards, this wine displays a beautiful purity of fruit with ripe strawberries, citrus, and flowers, laced with aromas of herbs and spice.  Full-bodied with a striking tannic backbone and beautiful concentration that lasts for minutes.  The wine’s gorgeous freshness and vibrancy is maintained thanks to the time spent in magnum.

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Barolo Garretti DOCG

Grapes for this Barolo come from the Garretti and Campè vineyards, in the Barolo township of Grinzane Cavour.  Typical varietal characteristics of sweet and savory herbs, tobacco, mint, liquorice, berries, roses and spice are laced together in this full-bodied, dense and chewy wine.  Beautiful fruit and length paired with polished tannins make for a supple, silky wine that will only continue to improve with age.

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Barolo Campé DOCG

This Barolo comes from 50+ year-old vines on the four-hectare (10 acres) Campè vineyard surrounding the winery in Grinzane Cavour.  The Campè is powerful and imposing in the glass, with a distinctive nose of violets, blackcurrants and blueberries combined with more vegetal nuances for an overall impression of freshness.  Graphite, smoke and leather add to the impressive depth and density of palate, while remaining vibrantly fruit-centric.  Smooth tannins shape a distinguished, balanced and long wine, to drink now or hold for a few years to enjoy its evolution. 

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Barolo Campé Riserva DOCG (Magnum)

Grapes for the magnum Riserva come exclusively from the highest part of the Campè vineyard, the best location for these sustainably-farmed vines, tended without the use of pesticides or herbicides (or even tractors or heavy machinery that might compress the earth).  The result is a harvest of the purest, most exceptional grapes, which are then transformed into an intense vibrant red wine, with subtle and complex aromas of strawberries, red roses, citrus and fresh hazelnuts.  This is full- bodied, yet reserved and beautiful Barolo with an incredible backbone of firm, composed tannins. The silky texture and extraordinary depth of fruit mesmerize up to the very end of the Campè Riserva’s long, long finish.  Released 10 years after harvest.

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