Vinification for the ‘Rabaja’ is essentially the same as the others, although there is more frequent racking during the first week or so of fermentation to gently extract the tannins, which are more characteristic in this cru. Maturation is in oak of varying capacity from 20–50 hectolitres for 30 months. Very expressive bouquet with elements of cherry, anise, rose petal and tobacco. While still beautifully elegant and aromatic, this is certainly a more structured and coiled Barbaresco, with intense chalky tannins and a compensating touch of fruit sweetness. As a complement to the structure, this wine displays ripe cherries and small red and darker fruits, liquorice, spice and alpine herbs on the palate and result in a wine with elements supremely capable of longevity.
Aromas of rose, violet and spice greet the nose along with a whiff of new leather. Savory and structured, the palate offers juicy raspberry, cherry compote and star anise accompanied by taut, fine-grained tannins and bright acidity. 95 points. —Kerin O’Keefe, WineEnthusiast.com.