Barolo: 2010-2013

Working exclusively within the hilly Southern Piedmont region, our Italian wines spring from the famous and austere regions of Barolo and Asti, home to dozens of DOC and DOCG classified wines. Ancient vines, many well over 100 years old, are interspersed with modern takes on varieties which flourish on rolling castle-topped hills steeped in history. Dry-farmed on these ancient marine sediments high in the Alta Langha mountains, we farm using Organic principles, and work closely with the land and the small communities of these tiny townships to ensure that modern viticulture and our modern winemaking are enmeshed to both preserve and elevate the traditions of the region.

We had put together a rare tetrad, a highly-limited vertical of 2010 through 2013 Barolos. It’s no coincidence that these four vintages were born in succession. For just like the Four Sons, the four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, the Four Vedas, and perhaps even the Beatles, U2, the Ghostbusters, and the charming children of South Park, history smiles upon the powerful unity enmeshed within the surprising confluence of contrasting individuals. No four vintages in succession have truly given the gift of Nebbiolo quite like the window into the soul of this variety derived from these four moments of captured vinous rapture.


The 2010 Trifulau Barolo DOCG, is 100% Nebbiolo, with ‘Barolo' being reserved for the highest possible classification for this fascinating and revered grape. Hailing from the famed Bussia hillside, the vines for all our Barolos straddle the border of two subtly-indulgent cru - those of Castiglione Falleto and Monforte D’Alba. Spoilt for choice, we began our Barolo journey with a hyper-curated selection of plots with various east and west aspects to encourage equal layering of aromatic complexity and density on the palate. Modern winemaking on this traditional hillside just below the hilltop commune of Barolo saw us macerate on skins for 5 weeks before allowing her to rest undisturbed in a very large format neutral boté 3 full years, in preparation for the journey home. 2010 has been hailed as a vintage for the ages; we have been fortunate enough to receive some terrific praise for our take on this legendary annum. Surprisingly astute as she enters teenage famedom, we are honoured and revered by the persistence of this wine’s rightful majesty.


The 2011 Trifulau Barolo DOCG, is, as with all Barolo, 100% Nebbiolo. Whilst 2011 became the wettest vintage of a generation here in Australia (except perhaps in WA), divine determinism saw to it that the 2011 vintage in Northern Italy balanced out the perturbation in our climate forcings, and turned on a hot, dry and almost roasted vintage in 2011. However, after more than a decade making stop-traffic wines at the most revered halcyon wineries in Napa Valley, Michelle trusted her guiles built upon an avoidance of excess, and skilfully dodged the chaos of the 2011 Piemontese vintage through judicious and inspiring vine selection and vinification to craft a most austere, thought-provoking, and delicate expression of a wine oozing class in a vintage written off as crass. When the world burns, take the time to slow dance. This wine does just that. You’ll be glad you did too.


The 2012 Trifulau Barolo DOCG became our nemesis from early on. If you know one Nebbiolo, you only ever met Nebbiolo once. A vintage formed in the maddening skies of snow, sleet, hail, heatwaves, inopportune rain, and even-more-inopportune mini-tornados, this vintage had it all, and then some. We picked this wine on the early side, wondering what else the wine gods were keen to toss at us, and hoping not to know. We turned up the vinification on this one, not afraid to draw every last atom of flavour from these extraordinarily complex berries, relying upon large format boté and time to ensure that this wine would reflect the intensity of its most arrogant birth, perhaps in the future. Well, that future has arrived; unfurl with caution.


Our 2013 Trifulau Barolo DOCG resolved the question of whether there exists a more temperamental and malleable variety than Nebbiolo within our grasp. A hot dry Spring, followed by a perversely stormy (almost sub-tropical) summer - and a dry-as-your-local-cafe’s-vegemite-toast autumn saw some very raw and sauvage-driven berries enter the winery for their enological journey to stardom. Never afraid to hold back, we got to work to pull every drop of flavour from these berries. Sound familiar? That’s what Michelle does best. And now, a decade later, this wine has just hit its sweet spot, tossing up a magic potion filled with structure, aromatic intensity, and savoury fascination. Drink now, at the risk of needing more soon.

Behind the Label

The rich culinary traditions of the Langhe are littered with a multitude of characters who have shaped its profuse history. No greater wonder is bestowed than upon the trifulau, the patient and obsessive truffle hunter, who, with dog in tow under the black of a moonless night seeks the greatest prize, for which both ink and blood have been spilt for generations. Within our Barolos, we pay tribute to this pursuit of the ethereal, a heady mix of hedonism, perseverance and tradition.


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