2004 Gaja Barbaresco

SKU #1033413 95 points Vinous

 The 2004 Barbaresco is at the beginning of what promises to be a long drinking window. Hints of cedar, cinnamon, earthiness and wild flowers open up in the glass with a sense of effortless grace. Brambly notes add a dimension of earthiness. There is so much to like here, first and foremost the wine's exceptional overall balance. What a beautiful wine this is. Today, the 2004 is a real stunner. (AG)  (6/2016)

95 points Wine Spectator

 There's an excellent balance of fruit and tannins, with vanilla, flowers and berries throughout, along with tar. Full and racy, with a long finish. It's all here. (JS)  (12/2007)

92 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Good medium-deep red. Perfumed aromas of raspberry, truffle, flowers and earth, with a whiff of Burgundian funk. Silky and elegant, with a seamless texutre to its red fruit and mineral flavors. Finishes long and suave, with fine-grained tannins. Lovely Barbaresco. (ST)  (11/2007)

91 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Tasted at Roberson’s Gaja vertical. Slightly deeper in colour than the 2006. There is certainly more penetration on the nose compared to the 2006, not as sensual, a little edgier. Dark cherries and plum, a hint of violets and a touch of seaweed. Very fine delineation. The palate is full-bodied and tannic. There is still some hardness here, a little brutish with a bolshie, slightly alcoholic finish. I think that the 2006 has better balanced and breeding. Drink 2012-2020. (NM)  (10/2010)

Jancis Robinson

 Very similar colour to the 06, maybe a little darker, more garnet. Smells more youthful just as it looks more youthful. Smoky sweet red cherry. Fragrant and delicately spiced, but less expressive than the 06. Touch of spicy oak and oak sweetness. Amazing to have so much depth and richness and velvet but within a more direct and structured and yet really dense and powerul wine. Definitely more held back than the 06 at the moment though there is that fine sweetness underneath. More of a powerhouse than the 06 and the oak seems to show more. 18.5/20 points (JH)  (10/2010)

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Price: $189.99
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- Tar and roses are the two descriptors most associated with this red grape grown, almost solely, in Italy's Piedmont, where it has achieved fame under the guises of the incredibly and age-worthy wines of Barolo and Barbaresco. Characterized by chewy tannins, high acidity, high-tone cherry and raspberry fruit and truffle aromas and flavors, Nebbiolo has rightfully earned its reputation. Sadly the late-ripening varietal is quite delicate and is prone to disease as well as damage by hail that frequently pelts the region. Outside of Barolo and Barbaresco, Nebbiolo is grown in the DOCs of Gattinara, Spanna and Ghemme. The Nebbiolos of the Nebbiolo d'Alba DOC in the southeastern part of Piedmont are generally lighter and more immediately approachable versions of the grape, aged for less time than Barolo and Barbaresco, which also makes them less expensive. Langhe Nebbiolos are generally made from declassified fruit from the aforementioned regions of Barolo, Barbaresco and Nebbiolo d'Alba.


- Once named Enotria for its abundant vineyards, Italy (thanks to the ancient Greeks and Romans) has had an enormous impact on the wine world. From the shores of Italy, the Romans brought grapes and their winemaking techniques to North Africa, Spain and Portugal, Germany, France, the Danube Valley, the Middle East and even England. Modern Italy, which didn't actually exist as a country until the 1870s, once produced mainly simple, everyday wine. It wasn't until the 1970s that Italy began the change toward quality. The 1980s showed incredible efforts and a lot of experimentation. The 1990s marked the real jump in consistent quality, including excellence in many Region that had been indistinct for ages. The entire Italian peninsula is seeing a winemaking revolution and is now one of the most exciting wine Region in the world.


- Piedmont is in the Northwestern region of Italy, bordering France and Switzerland. Piedmont is predominantly a plain where the water flows from the Swiss and French Alps to form the headwaters of the Po river. The major wine producing areas are in the southern portion of the region in the hills known as the "Langhe". Here the people speak a dialect that is 1/3 French and 2/3 Italian that portrays their historical roots. Their cuisine is one of the most creative and interesting in Italy. Nebbiolo is the King grape here, producing Barolo and Barbaresco. In addition, the Barbera and Dolcetto are the workhorse grapes that produce the largest quantity of wine. Piedmont is predominantly a red wine producing area. There are a few whites made in Piedmont, and the Moscato grape produces a large volume of sweet, semi-sweet and sparkling wines as well.
Specific Appellation:


- Barbaresco is a small village in Piedmont rising up out of the plain to sit in the Langhe hills. Here they produce a 100% Nebbiolo wine that takes its name from the village. Barbaresco is a serious wine of power and depth with an ability to age for multiple decades. Often thought of as the feminine version of Barolo, Barbaresco is a dramatically smaller region than its cousin. Barbaresco can only be produced within 1265 acres, and a maximum of 85,000 cases per year can be produced from the more than 500 growers. It is separated into four different communes of which three dominate, Barbaresco, Neive and Treiso. Angelo Gaja is perhaps one of the best known producers in the wine world, let alone Barbaresco, lives in the village. Recent technological and viticultural advances have made the wines more consistent, deeper in color and more flavorful. A wine of great perfume, the classic nose is "tar and roses", and complexity. Barbaresco is best served with roast meats, game birds or powerful cheese.