November 26, 2019

Old Barolos from Mascarello

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A few months ago while we were having dinner together, J told me that Ginsberg + Chan was planning a dinner featuring old Mascarello Barolos. I don’t drink Barolo on a regular basis, but I have had a few decent bottles of Mascarello… and this would be an interesting opportunity to try out some old vintages. As DaRC was also with us and he’s a real big fan of Barolos, the two of us signed up for this dinner right away.

By the time I got to Giando tonight, I had already spent 3 nights in a row wining and dining. I told myself that the menu looked to be on the light side, and I would just take sips as I normally do.

We started with a magnum of Pierre Peters Champagne, although I didn’t quite catch the exact cuvee. This was very light on the palate initially but gained some depth with time. Some minerals, but the finish was short.

Insalata Piemontese : Piedmont salad in “bagna cauda” dressing with hazelnut, bell peppers and eggs

1973 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – very old now. Plenty of salty plum (話梅) and savory notes, soy sauce, with some sweetness underneath. Sipping the wine delivers a light and delicated palate, while bigger gulps revealed that tannins were still around.

1975 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – more savory notes, with a tighter nose. A hint of sweetness on the palate. After 10 minutes the nose really showed, and became slightly minty later.

Composta di zucca arrosto e fegatini – the pumpkin was OK, and the chicken liver mousse was kinda interesting…

1964 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – a little stinky, but underneath there was nice, sweet fruit with a little bit of smoke. Alcoholic nose, but this turned more elegant later.

1967 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – definitely savory notes here in the really big nose. Ripe and ripe, with cooked fruit underneath.

Rigatoni al ragú di volatili – very good. Loved the ragú made with pheasant, duck, and guinea fowl.

1968 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – Asian spices, savory soy sauce, with Chinese licorice (甘草). Flat and dead on the palate.

1974 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – a little weird… not much on the nose and came with high acidity.

1978 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – pretty nice with more intense nose. Actually closer to a Châteauneuf-du-Pape, with more animal and savory notes. My wine of the night.

Braciola di maiale con cavoli al peperoncino – this Duroc pork chop was disappointing. First of all, it was gigantic, which meant it would have been easy to overcook without brining first. And it did come out moist after cooking… but DaRC felt the kitchen had brined it for too long, so it was more salty than necessary.

The cabbage, on the other hand, was sweet and delicious.

1990 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – nice and elegant.

2007 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo – opened and served 5 hours later. Wow! Really big nose of cooked fruit, mint, potpourri, rubber, tropical fruit, and kinda alcoholic. Maybe some orange here? Would love to drink it again in a few years.

Selezione di formaggi di Giando

This was a pretty educational evening, but I think I’ll stick to the other regions of Europe…

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