2012 Pio Cesare Barolo

SKU #1282847 95 points James Suckling

 This is a young Barolo that builds on the palate with super silky tannins and fantastic pure and delicious fruit. Hints of hazelnut, plum and dark berry character. Full and polished tannins. Better in 2019 but so delicious now.  (3/2016)

94 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 Pio Cesare has produced a small miracle with the 2012 Barolo. In a vintage that saw many nondescript wines, this Nebbiolo is bursting with energy and personality. The bouquet opens to an exciting sense of freshness with bright cherry and wild berry at the forefront. You also get balsam herb and mint, with cola and licorice in generous supply at the back. The wine should evolve slowly over the next ten years. Hats off to Pio Cesare for creating a standout base Barolo in 2012. I apologize in advanced for referring to this wine as a "base" Barolo, as I know this is something that the folks at Pio Cesare fight hard to discourage. Perhaps the world "classic" is more appropriate, as the wine offers the crisp and clean wines that are characteristic of traditional Barolo. (ML)  (6/2016)

92 points Wine Spectator

 Cherry, menthol, leather and earth aromas and flavors mark this meaty red. Dense and firm, with a solid matrix of tannins. Finds balance and lingers. Be patient with this. Best from 2019 through 2033. (BS, Web-2016)

91 points Vinous

 Pio Cesare's 2012 Barolo is a tremendous wine considering the vintage and its production of more than 80,000 bottles. Approximately 50% of the fruit comes from Serralunga, which gives the Barolo its power and muscle, but in 2012, the lighter style of the vintage yielded a wine that can be enjoyed with minimal cellaring. For its combination of quality, availability and price, Pio Cesare's straight Barolo is pretty hard to top. (AG)  (11/2016)

90 points Wine Enthusiast

 This opens with enticing scents of dark berry, kitchen spice, blue flower and toast. The firmly structured palate delivers red berry, licorice, chopped herb and well-integrated oak alongside fine-grained tannins. (KO)  (12/2016)

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Price: $59.99
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Staff Image By: John Downing | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/13/2017 | Send Email
Our wine producer friends throughout Piemonte are truly dedicated and hard working but few have toiled more than Pio Boffa of Pio Cesare and his 2012 Barolo is a testament to that. The vintage was a challenging one yet he managed to produce an impressive wine bursting with richness and personality. This is a Barolo that requires little cellaring and is wonderful to drink now. The fruit is concentrated, the tannins ripe and the acidity relatively mild and the wine is a delight.

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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:


- Made from 100% Nebbiolo grapes, these wines take their name from the village of Barolo. A maximum of 205,000 cases per year can be made from 3081 acres of land divided between 11 communes and more than 1200 growers. La Morra, Barolo, Castiglione Falletto, Monforte and Serralunga are the most important communes and produce most of the exported wine. Barolo is a powerhouse wine in some communes but also more delicate in others (La Morra is the most delicate and Serralunga the most powerful). Recent technological and viticultural advances are remaking Barolo into a wine that is more consistent balanced. Producers here do not want to change the flavor or feel of their wines, only improve and eliminate poor winemaking technique. A wine of great perfume, body and size the classic nose of "tar and roses". Barolo is best served with roast meats the Piemontese classic would be "Stracotto del Barolo or pot roast cooked with a Barolo, game birds or powerful cheese.