In our ongoing quest to find the absolute best wine to bring to our visitors, we come across a huge range of producers both large and small. It is always important to remember that, as much as the larger producers deserve to be where they are based on the merits of the drinks that they produce, that there are also plenty of other winemakers who are more than capable of making great wine but haven’t quite achieved the same levels of recognition.
With that in mind we have decided to take a look at a company that has built a reputation for creating some truly wonderful red wines, including a variety of Barolo that simply must be tried by any and everybody.
The Fontanafredda winemaker has more than a century of history behind it, much like the history some other more famous winemakers, and the company still makes use of the traditional winemaking ideals of its region to craft some truly spectacular drinks. Here we will shine a spotlight on the company itself and some of its achievements, in addition to looking at one of the best wines currently available on the market for Barolo lovers.
An Overview of Fontanafredda
Based in the heart of Piedmont, which is one of most well-known winemaking areas in all of Italy, the vineyards of Fontanafredda are located in the hills of Langhe. They have been in use for more than a hundred years, with old records showing that the area, which amounts to apporximately 54 hectares, was registered under the private estate Vittorio Emanuele II King of Sardinia. This order was passed on 17th June 1858, resulting in the land being transferred from Roggeri Giacomo to the king.
The story goes that the king had falled deeply in love with a woman named Rosa Vercallana, who was known to some as “La Bela Rusin” thanks to her deep beauty. Unfortunately for the king, she was a commoner who was the daughter of a drum major who was in the king’s service.
However, this didn’t deter Vittorio, who proceeded to marry her anyway. A mere year later he granted the land that the Fontanafredda estates now stand to his bride, making her the Countess of Mirafiori and Fontanfredda in the process.
During this time, the land was used t cultivate grapes, but it was not being used in a business capacity. Instead, much of the produce was used privately or distributed amongst the local people. It was the sun of the couple, Emanuele Guerrieri, Count of Mirafiore, who looked at the land as more than what it was currently being used for. Emanuele Guerrieri was a nobleman with a deep passion for wine, having dedicated his life to crafing beautiful drinks. His modern approach was coupled with business sense, leading to hom beginning the Fontanafredda company in 1878. Based on his ideals, and the quality wines that he began producing, the company soon began expanding and quickly gained a reputation even amongst some of the more well-renowned winemakers in the history of Piedmont.
Flash forward to the present day and the company’s noble history is still written all over the land. In addition to the sweeping vineyards, which are used to grow many delectable grapes that are used in some of the company’s best vintages, are a hunting lodge and hamlet, both of which are leftovers from the time when the land had a more regal air.
The company has also continued in the footsteps of its founder, who has a penchant for innovation that led to the creation of some truly stunning wines. Experimentation and innovation are two of the key principles of Fontanafredda and the company is constantly on the search for new blends that will wow wine lovers, in addiiton to adhering closely to the traditions that have already been handed down over the course of more than a century in the industry.
Fontanafredda and its vineyards now stand as a point of much interest to many wine lovers who enjoy the deep thrills of a good Barolo. The Langhe has become hallowed ground for many people, with a landscape marked by decades-old vines and old buildings that are a true joy for tourists to explore, whilst aslo harkening back to a noble era.
The work and creativity of the company can be seen in every wine that they produce, including the Fontanafredda Lazzarito Vigna La Delizia Barolo 2004 that we will examine below. It is a company that is stepped in stories of romance and grounded by a dedication to the culture of wine that began in earnest with Emanuele Guerrieri and continues through to this very day.
As well as their most famous of drinks, the company also produces a Barolo that is more than worth sampling, regardless of if you are a fan of the modern or traditional style of the drink. After all, as the company’s main edict is to combine the traditions of the past with the methods of the future, you can practically guarantee that the wine will offer the best of both worlds in that respect.
Featuring a gorgeous ruby red colouring that has just a small hint of garnet, the Fontanafredda Lazzarito Vigna La Delizia Barolo 2004 has a beautiful rich aroma that features diverse hints of plums, tobacco, dried mushrooms and nutmegs. This all combines to make it a rather complex and interesting drink that is most certainly worth exploring.
Once you taste the wine you will be met with thick and dense tannins that do have the ability to overpower lighter foods, meaning that the wine should ideally be enjoyed with richer foods, such as red meat.
However, that is not to say that the drink doesn’t have a certain softness about it and it is this that many will find that they enjoy after the initial taste begins to give way. This is a truly spectacular wine and a worthy addition to the repertoire for the company.