“Of all the crus bottled by the Produttori del Barbaresco, the Rio Sordo bottling is probably the most rustic (in a good sense) in terms of its aromatics and flavor profile. There is more of a game bird aspect to mature Rio Sordo, often coupled to autumnal notes, smoke, porcini and plenty of red fruit and herb tones. Of all of the crus, this is the one that really cries out to be served with roasted meats, preferably on a cold, damp autumnal or winter evening. The Produttori’s Rio Sordo is certainly a complete and very captivating bottle of Barbaresco, with its “noble rusticity” very, very enjoyable when set in the proper context, and I find this one of the most underrated crus in their fine lineup.” -- John Gilman, View From The Cellar --
It took a sympathetic local priest to realise the only way for the community of Barbaresco to survive, in the poverty of the late 1950's, was for the winemakers to form a co-operative. The first 19 members made their wine in the church basement, but it didn't take long for this idea to provide them with solvency as well as solidarity. Quality too, as a more secure income allowed the individual growers to maintain the high standards they aspired to. Over decades the co-operative grew to it's current membership of 52, during which time it also developed an extensive and almost bewildering array of single vineyard offerings. Until recently the traditional labelling and less-than-dynamic global marketting strategy meant Produttori was strictly the preserve of experts. Nowadays however, as the world trawls Piedmont for both it's obvious and it's hidden gems, Produttori's delightfully backward labelling and proud obsession with qualtity are revealing it as one of the world's most profoundly undervalued wine treasures.
What The Critics Say
96/100 Wine Enthusiast, Kerin O'Keefe
"Dark-skinned berry, camphor, rose and crushed stone aromas shape the nose along with a whiff of pipe tobacco. The aromas carry on to the structured, full-bodied palate along with juicy Marasca cherry and licorice. Firm, fine-grained tannins provide support." Drink 2022 - 2030
94/100 Decanter, James Button
"At the southern end of the commune of Barbaresco lies Rio Sordo, known for producing powerful wines. First produced by Produttori in 1978, this is right on the mark, with a denseness and muscularity that makes it stand out in the lineup. It has an inky, meaty depth which seems to have absorbed the wood into it so that it's not so pronounced, overlaid with plenty of complex, savoury damp earth character. This is less pure and ripe in feel that the Pora, and although the acidity still has presence, it's softer, more gentle. This is a smooth, dense, intense wine that you will want to sink into. 10,000 bottles produced." Drink 2022 - 2038
92/100 Vinous, Antonio Galloni
"The 2015 Barbaresco Riserva Rio Sordo comes across as quite powerful and dense today. A few months ago it was more refined, but today I get the impression of a wine that is growing in bottle. As always, the Rio Sordo is a Barbaresco of textural suaveness and early appeal, relative to the more structured wines in this range. Spice, new leather, tobacco and cedar meld into the supple, resonant finish." Drink 2022 - 2035
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