2021 Poderi e Cantine Oddero Langhe Nebbiolo


Current stock: 42

The thing that all fans of this ultra-important La Morra cantina agree upon is that anything made with an Oddero label on it is going to be some serious juice! ‘Fun, easy-to-drink quaffer’ is rarely a description one finds in any review of an Oddero wine. The style here tends towards the contemplative, and these are wines built to express purity, classicism and terroir far more than to simply give us a palate of fresh forward fruit. Even the family’s lovely Dolcetto d’Alba and Moscato d’Asti can age gracefully. That’s what makes wines like the Odderos’ Langhe Nebbiolo such extraordinary values. Here is a wine from an amazingly pedigreed, organically farmed vineyard; adroitly handled with the same care winemakers Mariacristina Oddero and Luca Veglio lavish upon their much-coveted single-vineyard and Classico Barolos, still at under $35 a bottle. Sourced, mostly, from the ziggurat-shaped, pine-tree capped vineyard called Bricco San Biagio, directly across from the cantina in Santa Maria di La Morra, the vines are now aged twenty years and would make great Barolo if they weren’t so important to the production of this wine. I was staying at the winery during the magnificent 2021 harvest and witnessed, from my balcony, these grapes being picked and then, a few minutes later, arriving on the back of a tractor at the pad and being pressed under Cristina and Luca’s watchful eyes. These beautiful, fragrant grapes went on to be fermented and macerated in tank for around two weeks and then aged for a year and a half in casks of various sizes, none new and none small, before finally being released last year. The resulting wine is a sort of Barolo in a minor key- a beautifully compact, languid expression of La Morra Nebbiolo with plenty of clayey dried earth notes, wild fennel and violets that swirl around a solid core of red and black cherry, plum skin, espresso and bitter chocolate. Elegant, focused and polished, there is already a lot of complexity to its mid-weight flavors, and the nice tannins make it a wonderful choice for all kinds of richer fare. But, as we said before, it’s a more contemplative choice than many of the Langhe Nebbiolo we see around here and a good candidate for another five or six years in the cellar should you like your Oddero with a little more age on it. 15,000 bottles produced…my final 60 are coming next Tuesday! (View from the balcony, alas, not included)