VM 94 / WA 94+ / WS 94 pts
VM: The 2017 Barbaresco Riserva Ovello is a heady, explosive wine. I don’t think I have ever tasted an Ovello from the Produttori with this much heft. The strong mineral and saline accents typical of this site are present, but they are matched pound for pound by notable mid-palate richness and intensity in its fruit. The 2017 is a brooding powerhouse that needs time to unwind.
WA: One of the bigger productions (with 17,744 bottles) in the Produttori del Barbaresco’s portfolio is the 2017 Barbaresco Riserva Ovello. All of the Riservas in this vintage are characterized by especially exuberant and bold aromas, and this bottle is a prime example. Cassis, wild cherry, tobacco, rusty nail and licorice build intensity. The wine is tapered and silky in texture, but it also offers a good amount of power (and 15% alcohol) to carry it through the aging process. Best After 2024. Rating: 94+
WS: Taut and sinewy, boasting cherry, black currant, grass, iron and tar notes. Powerful tannins drive the finish, which is compact for now. In the end, this is lightly astringent, but has plenty of drive and should find equilibrium with time. Best from 2026 through 2043.