We happened across Sassi by chance – a friend brought a bottle of the 2016 Riserva to a dinner, and it outshone everything else on the table. After finding no local importer, we made contact with the winery and asked them to send us samples of their current releases. Since their arrival these Barbarescos have become a welcome addition to our small (but delicious!) Italian lineup.
2016 was an outstanding vintage in Piedmont; Vinous’s Antonio Galloni declared it “a stunning, brilliant vintage across the board.” We bought the last of the stock at Sassi, and are glad we did. It’s top notch Barbaresco from one of the best vintages in recent memory.
Founded in 1997 by Angelo Sassi, the small estate is today run by Davide Carniel, producing just a few hundred cases of Barbaresco annually. Their 2016 Barbaresco Riserva spends an extra two years in bottle before release, and the transformation is terrific.
The nose is deep and lovely, with beautifully integrated oak and notes of roses, violets, and orange zest. The mouth is clean and beautifully textured, with subtle tannins and a long, tightly channeled finish. The balance of tannin and fruit and acidity is magnificent – think Volnay premier cru with a few years in the bottle. Pair this with fresh pasta carbonara for a match made in paradiso.
Sassi San Cristoforo Barbaresco Riserva 2016
bottle price: $62