Gaja Barbaresco 2019

Gaja Barbaresco 2019

95 Points Wine Spectator, 95 Points Robert Parker a truly iconic wine from a superlative vintage.


Country, Region
Italy, Barbaresco
Food friend

Additional Details

Tasting Notes

The 2019 Barbaresco is gorgeous! Bright and nervy, with fabulous balance, the 2019 captures all the best this interesting vintage had to offer. The aromatics alone are captivating with immediate notes of rose and wild strawberries, followed by lighter notes of marzipan, wild fennel and a hint of juniper. There’s lots of vibrant Nebbiolo fruit on the palate with a long floral and spice-tinged finish. A truly iconic wine from one of the best producers in the world.

Producer details

The pioneering Gaja family has been growing vines and making wine for five generations, a tradition they started in 1859 in Piedmont. Each generation nurtures the dreams and vision of the previous one, building and innovating for the next. Above all, they are inspired by respect for nature and believe attention to detail is paramount. Without a doubt,the name Gaja is synonymous with innovation and each generation has brought something new. Clotilde Rey drove the direction of quality, her son Giovanni continued this legacy as well as acquiring some of the best vineyards in Barbaresco including the three ‘crus’ for which Gaja is best known: Sorì San Lorenzo, Sorì Tildìn and Costa Russi. Angelo introduced new methods with higher density planting, green harvesting, lower yields, temperature controlled vinification, shorter macerations, large barrique ageing and longer corks. While their home remains in the beautiful village of Barbaresco, more recent adventures have taken them to Tuscany where the Pieve Santa Restituta Estate in Montalcino produces a stunning Brunello, and to Ca’Marcanda in Bolgheri.

In the vineyard

14 vineyards situated in the municipality of Barbaresco. The land, at a height between 250 and 330m above the sea level, covers a surface of 21.4 hectares. The plants are 40 years old on average. The start to the 2019 season was marked by a dry spell. The months of January and February were dry with average and
relatively low temperatures for the time of year, especially at the end of January (ranging from -4°C to -8°C). Optimal
conditions because they helped to protect against the onset of diseases. Scarce snowfalls in general in the winter
months, with just 10 cm falling in January after the sixth of the month and a few sporadic downpours (50-60 mm)
in February. With little water available in the ground, budding was slower and later compared to previous years,
as was the ripening of the grapes. From April 20 onwards and throughout the month of May, there was abundant
rainfall (200 mm) with average-low temperatures (15-17°C). Budding progressed at a steady rate in May and canopy
management was successfully completed, without rushing, because the plant grew well at the right speed. At the
end of June, the temperatures rose from 26 degrees to 41.5°C for about 3 days and this situation proved stressful for
the plant with signs of browning appearing on the leaves. From mid-July onwards, however, the first significant rains
set in with 200 mm falling at Barbaresco, 130 mm at Barolo and 150 mm at La Morra. This rain was very important
because the vine started growing again with lush vegetation. Temperatures settled at around 26/28/30° degrees
for the rest of the summer. At the end of July/beginning of August, more rain fell resulting in a total of 800 mm
from the beginning of the year to the end of August (based on the rainfall in the Langhe in the 1990s). The grapes
regained tone, the soil now with a high water content plus warm, but not excessively hot temperatures, allowed the
phenolic ripening to progress.

In the winery

The grapes, coming from each single vineyard, separately undergo fermentation, maceration and ageing in oak for 12 months. Then they are blended and further aged in oak for another 12 months.

Food Recommendations

The wine is well placed to complement game such as wild duck or pheasant. It always pairs beautifully with grilled and roasted red meats, pizza, pasta and mild to strong cheeses

In the press

95 points - Wine Spectator - "A complex red, this reveals multidimensional aromas and flavours of rose, cherry, liquorice, mineral and spices. This is fused to a vibrant structure that, for now, gives a taut, almost racy profile. Marrying power and grace, this ends in a long, floral- and spice-tinged aftertaste. Best from 2026 through 2045."


94 points - James Suckling - "This has aromas of iron, mineral, bitter chocolate, wild strawberries, raw walnuts, orange peel and decayed roses. Medium- to full-bodied, with sleek and very chalky tannins. Lots of fruit on the palate with a fine, fresh and mineral end. Pure and linear."

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