The first ever 100-point Langhe Nebbiolo.
The Cognos are a fourth generation winemaking family, but it’s the current generation that has put the entire wine world on notice. A few years back, the preeminent Italian wine critic, Antonio Galloni declared, “Elvio Cogno is one of the hottest wineries in Piedmont right now. Proprietors Nadia Cogno and Valter Fissore have been on tear of late, and show no signs whatsoever of slowing down.” Huge praise, but it’s proven again and again to be true.
In 2021, the Cogno’s received two perfect 100-point reviews. The first came courtesy of Wine & Spirits for the 2016 Elvio Cogno “Bricco Pernice” Barolo, a usually drop-dead gorgeous wine that was carved off the five-acre plot in the Ravera Cru. It’s yet to make it to the states so I haven’t had it yet. But I have had their most recent perfect wine, the 2020 Montegrilli Nebbiolo from Langhe.
A Langhe Nebbiolo scoring 100 points is a seemingly impossible feat, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s this Elvio Cogno team. The wine earned the score from Luca Gardini, the hardworking Italian critic who has earned his reputation as a tough, no frills critic who rates only wines from his homeland.
But Gardini was swept off his feet the same way I was when I tried this wine, the same way the Wine Advocate was when they tasted last year’s version of the Montegrilli. It’s insane. A gorgeous, silky Nebbiolo with bright, fresh red fruit, sophistication and depth, a full mid-palate and great acidity and salinity to wash it all down. It’s the kind of wine that runs circles around bottles three times the price.
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100 Points, Luca Gardini
“Un Langhe Nebbiolo strepitoso, il migliore mai assaggiato. Un vino espressivo, territoriale, dalla forte impronta stilistica, che sento quindi di voler premiare come eccellenza all’interno della propria categoria. Premessa doverosa per spiegare che i miei punteggi non si riferiscono mai al vino in senso assoluto, ma valutano ogni vino collocandolo all’interno del proprio areale di produzione e della propria categoria. E qui, lo ripeto, siamo al top.
A bright and brilliant purple-ruby colour. At the nose it’s clean and vertical with hints of pomegranate, red plum, wild and iodine touches. The mouthfeel is taut and broad, with a strong acid vein that supports a marked salinity and a citrusy finish. Great depth and drinkability.