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Sperss is a term affectionately used to denote nostalgia for precious things lost with time – a homage to the origins of the winery and the generations who built it. When the Gaja family decided to stop acquiring fruit from outside growers and bottle only estate-grown grapes, in 1961, it was a bold and difficult move. It would help to ensure a high standard of quality, but it also meant that for the first time in the winery’s history, they would not be able to produce a Barolo. In 1988, nearly three decades after that fateful decision was made, the GAJA winery purchased a 30-acre farm in Serralunga d’Alba and rechristened it Sperss.
Red garnet color, earthy and savory with pure notes of coal, tobacco, juniper, and sap. On the palate the wine is tense, loaded with energy that will need serious ageing to fully develop. Impressive fruit concentration, with sweet red berries, raspberries, wild strawberry, red currant, plum, blood orange, bark, liquorice.
95 Points - James Suckling
More forward and in a more earthly realm than the dizzying heights of the Conteisa this vintage, but it’s so endearing and immediately delights. The aromas range from elderberries and black cherries to brambleberries and Chinese spices. Full-bodied and structured with powerful tannins that encase bright and forthright blue fruit, which is polished over by a sheen of glimmering acidity. Long finish. Delicious now, but better in 2022.
94 Points - Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
This is a slightly more subdued vintage of this legendary wine, albeit just as sophisticated as past editions. The 2014 Barolo Sperss opens to gorgeous aromas of dark fruit, wet earth and white truffle. The vineyards in Serralunga d'Alba produced much less fruit than average and suffered from bouts of downy mildew during the rainy seasons. But Serralunga d'Alba fruit is also harvested late, and that extra time was important for achieving grape ripeness targets. The wine presents depth and complexity within the context of a thinner vintage. Having said that, the bouquet is spectacular.
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