Established in 1881, Pio Cesare, now run by fifth generation Pio Boffa, was one of the very first producers to believe in the potential and quality of the great wines of Piemonte and to export to the UK. A ceaseless devotion to the individuality of each of the region’s wines informs Pio’s choices in the vineyards and cellar. He applies a ‘minimal intervention’ philosophy to wine making, creating wines that year after year, are ranked among the world’s best wines.
Pio Cesare own 52 hectares of vineyards in the hills of Barolo and Barbaresco, including some of the prime sites for growing Nebbiolo including 16 hectares of the ‘Ornato’ vineyard in Serralunga d’Alba, one of the best vineyards in the Barolo area. In 1985, Pio Cesare decided to select a small quantity of Nebbiolo from three different plots within the vineyard to create a Barolo that reflects the characteristics of Serralunga soil. The soil here is poor and compact, resulting in a wine of great structure and ageing potential. “Ornato” is only produced in outstanding years.
The grapes are hand-picked. After pressing, the grapes are fermented in stainless steel with skin contact for 15 days and aged in mid-toasted French oak for 36 months, 50% in new barriques and 50% in 25 hectolitre casks.
“After the powerful 2013 vintage, 2014 is more balanced and elegant in style. Nevertheless, 2014 is considered a hot vintage. Unlike other regions in Italy that suffered from rain in the summer and into the autumn, the rain in Piedmont only lasted until mid-August and then we had very dry and hot conditions with high day-night temperature difference.
This has been fundamental for the maturation of the delicate Nebbiolo grapes.
We had a very strict and severe green harvest with an even flowering which resulted in excellent quality. The rainwater accumulated during the summer helped the vineyards with the most southern exposure and the green harvest resulted into very concentrated and fruit-forward wines with intense colour.
Both Barolo and Barbaresco are very elegant, with great energy and balance between acidity and structure with very rich perfumes. The 2014 vintage is a perfect example of how fundamental the end of the season is in determining the final quality of the grapes and wines.”, Pio Boffa
Elegant and fragrant with aromas of delicate florals, tar, sweet cherry and spice. Immediately approachable with excellent balance and structure. Polished tannins and a long, mineral finish.
Serve with red meat dishes, game or seasonal truffle, mature cheeses.
Serve at 16-18°C.
“Pio Cesare Barolo Ornato – Aromas of ripe morel cherry and subtle spicy notes of cardamom, oregano, cumin and red pepper. Medium-full with very good concentration. Very good acidity, lovely harmony of all components; big tannins, a but sharp, but not overpowering. Best in 12-15 years. Excellent.“,
Wine Spectator: 92 POINTS
September 30, 2018, Bruce Sanderson
“Tightly wound, offering cherry, plum, wild herb, tar and spice flavors matched to a tensile frame. More savory than fruity, with the finish compact and unyielding today. Best from 2022 through 2035. 700 cases made.”
JamesSuckling.com: 95 POINTS
April 24, 2018, James Suckling
This is very spicy and fruity one with perfumed and bright aromas. Leather, too. Medium-bodied, refined and layered with beautiful ripe tannins. Fine, polished texture with berry and walnut undertones. Drink or hold.
Barolo DOCG, Piemonte