Langhe Hills Nebbiolo: The best value reds in the world?

Apr 23, 2024 | All, International wines | 0 comments

Langhe Nebbiolo offers some of the most elegant drinking pleasure of any style of red wine. To our mind, they are also some of the greatest value reds on the planet. On tasting GD Vajra’s Langhe Nebbiolo, Antonio Galloni of Vinous commented: ‘One of the early lessons I was taught was simple but powerful … Buy the least expensive wine from the best producers.’

Today we offer five excellent examples of Nebbiolo – arguably Italy’s greatest grape – from its northern home, Piedmont. Crucially, Langhe Nebbiolo is often made from the same highly regarded parcels as the estates’ Barolos and Barbarescos!

Langhe Nebbiolo's

The lightest and most ethereal is the Marengo Langhe Nebbiolo from the brilliant 2021 vintage. For clarity and distilled elegance, the GD Vajra 2022 is an absolute favourite – it’s simply delicious. And from one of Piedmont’s rising stars, Giulia Negri’s Pian delle Mole Langhe Nebbiolo 2021 is lithe, dry, and sophisticated – like a fine Burgundy, it’s a wine that requires a few more years to settle.

The last two offer darker fruit and a touch more power. Produttori del Barbaresco’s 2022 Langhe Nebbiolo is made from declassified Barbaresco vineyards and is ‘one of the greatest and most profound value reds on the international wine market’, notes Greg Sherwood MW. The final wine in the set is the slightly more powerful, deeper-fruited ‘Baby Barbaresco’ (James Suckling) from Pio Cesare. Their 2020 Langhe Nebbiolo is ideal for heartier occasions, with a bit more age adding autumnal complexity.

‘Growing numbers of savvy collectors recognise the value, diversity and investment potential to be found in the land of Barolo and Barbaresco,’ writes Decanter. Langhe Nebbiolo is the perfect place to start!

Tasting Notes:

Marengo, Langhe Nebbiolo 2021

‘Broad and satisfying nose. But simpler and fruitier than the Barolo. Even so, it has the fine tannins. A good introduction.’ – Jancis Robinson, jancisrobinson.com, 16.5/20

GD Vajra, Langhe Nebbiolo 2022

‘The G.D. Vajra 2022 Langhe Nebbiolo has so much bright freshness and primary intensity. This is a lovely entry-level wine and one that I warmly recommend to lovers of Nebbiolo who are also conscious of price. The wine sings from the glass with violet, sour cherry, raspberry, bitter almond and rose hip. There is a very ruby-colored, almost grenadine-like quality as well. I could see this pairing with a fatty food like a classic pasta carbonara. I’m ready for a second glass.’ – Monica Larner, Wine Advocate, 91/100

Giulia Negri, Langhe Nebbiolo Pian delle Mole 2021

‘Crystaline, pure fruited with taut Burgundian refinement. The Nebbiolo fruit is so precise and clean, with shy raspberry, strawberry, and some darker fruit tones. Beautiful perfume billows forth, constantly drawing you back in. Deftly handled and really quite delicate. The palate is lithe and dry, the tannins fine grained and packed away, turning savoury, laced with dark-fruited acidity.’ – James Pietersen

Produttori del Barbaresco, Langhe Nebbiolo 2022

‘Here’s a pretty little surprise from Produttori del Barbaresco. The 2022 Langhe Nebbiolo is slender and streamlined in consistency, but it remains surprisingly focused throughout. It shows raisiny flavors of prune and dried fig. The effect is delineated and sharp. The wine is generous, and it offers a lot of bright energy as well, within the context of hot-vintage fruit.’ – Monica Larner, Wine Advocate, 91/100

Pio Cesare, Langhe Nebbiolo 2020

‘Perfumed and floral with hints of citrus. Strawberry. Medium-bodied with firm and fine tannins, and a bright and fresh finish. Pretty. Baby Barbaresco. Drink or hold.’ – James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, 92/100

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