Located in the hills of Langhe Piedmont, in the municipalities of Monforte d’Alba, Novello, La Morra, and Barbaresco, is ‘La Biòca’, a small vineyard estate made up of nine hectares dedicated to the production of high-quality wines.
‘Aculei’ — the ‘quills’ on the mascot of La Biòca, the hedgehog — is taken from three cru vineyards in Barolo, Castagni, Bussia and Ravera. Hand-harvested in small baskets, destemmed and cool fermented for a few days with extended maceration on the skins, each cru gets a minimum 18 months in small oak barrels, before being tasted and blended to create Aculei.
Ruby-garnet in colour, this will turn towards brick or tile red with a bit of age, this is full and complex on the nose, a heady mix of dried fruits, savoury, meaty elements, woodsmoke and garrigue. Big, grippy tannins dominate the open but things quickly settle down with a harmonious and soft mid-palate showcasing redcurrant, cherry and prune, unwinding onto a long, lingering finish, with biltong, toasted nut and wild herbs, dry, savoury and very moreish.
Only the wine or the food can be the star — pair with something simple like mushroom risotto or a charcuterie board of dried meats and hard cheeses.
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