1999 Vietti "Lazzarito" Barolo

SKU #1331782 94 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Impressive dark red-ruby color. High-pitched, complex, slightly roasted nose combines currant, minerals, violet, earth and sweet, spicy oak. Minerally, firm and perfumed in the mouth, with lovely clarity of flavor. I found a powerful stony element that reminded me of Chateauneuf du Pape. Finishes with huge but horizontal tannins and great aromatic persistence. This may prove to be the best vintage yet for this bottling, although the infant 2001 already offers extraordinary sweetness and concentration, with great thickness and extract and fruit of steel. 94+ (ST)  (11/2002)

93 points Wine Spectator

 Extremely aromatic with roses, berries and raspberries. Full-bodied, with very fine tannins and ripe and wonderful fruit. This is crystal clean and beautifully focused. This is always one of Vietti's top wines. Best after 2007. 400 cases made. (JS)  (11/2003)

92 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 The 1999 Barolo Lazzarito, is potent and tarry on the nose, packed, structured, and dense in flavor, with superior concentration and intensity. It will require time to come around, and should be consumed from 2007 to 2022. (DT)  (10/2003)

92 points Vinous

 Dark ruby. With its exotic earthy, tarry nose, deeply expressive layers of sweet dark fruit and toasted oak flavors, and weighty, potent structure, the Lazzarito is Vietti's most modern-styled Barolo. As has been the case in past vintages I find the combination of Serralunga fruit and barrique-aging make for a superb match in this Barolo as there is plenty of fruit here to support the oak. Ideally a few years of cellaring are optimal after which it should drink well for another decade. (AG)  (5/2006)

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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.