One of the things that a lot of people — even very informed Italian wine folks — don’t realize about Barolo is that the appellation wasn’t considered a producer of world-class wines until the 1990s.

Yes, the history is there: Barolo can trace its beginnings to the estate of King Victor Emmanuel II in the late 19th century. And the quality is there as well: Barolo was already being produced with spectacular results as early as the 1950s (with 1958 and 1955 both considered landmark vintages for growers there). But it wasn’t until the Italian wine renaissance began to take shape in the 90s that wine collectors really began to pay attention.

To tell the story of Barolo in the 20th century, we need to remember a handful of families from the 1950s and 1960s that began building the appellation into the powerhouse of fine wine that it is today.

One of those families was the Prunotto family, who took over a failing cooperative in the 1950s and turned it into an independent winery.

But nearly all Barolo observers would agree that it was the Colla family, who took over in the 1960s as managers of the estate, who would start making some of the best wines ever produced in the Langhe Hills where Barolo and Barbaresco are located.

It was the legendary Beppe Colla who recognized that Bussia, the sub-zone of Monforte township where Prunotto has its vineyards, could make long-lived, rich wines with complexity and elegance. And the wines Beppe made in the 1970s and 1980s are considered Nebbiolo benchmarks (I remember drinking the 78 in New York in 2007, a truly life-changing experience).

By the end of the 1980s, the Colla brothers — Beppe and Tino, the younger of the two — decided that it was time to move on and start their own winery. That’s when Prunotto was acquired by Piero Antinori whose daughter has been the faithful steward of this extraordinary property ever since she came on board.

I couldn’t be more thrilled to be sharing the 2017 Barolo by Prunotto with you this week for the Thursday evening virtual dinner. It’s a true “Barolo classic” and wine that deserves the attention of Nebbiolphiles everywhere.

Thanks for your support: These dinners wouldn’t be possible without your support.

Jeremy Parzen
wine director
ROMA

A Barolo Classic: Prunotto
Virtual Wine Dinner & Seminar
with ROMA wine director Jeremy Parzen

Thursday, November 18
7:30 p.m.
guests will be provided with a Zoom link

$119 per couple

Please email Jeremy to reserve
by clicking here.

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Shrimp Cocktail
Spaghetti alla Bolognese
Veal Piccata

Prunotto 2017 Barolo

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