• Hallmark notes of licorice, spice and dark fruits; ripe and integrated tannins
• 93 points, Vinous Media, 92 James Suckling
• Wine Spectator: 88 Cherry, plum, tar, eucalyptus, iron and tobacco flavors are buried in this solidly built red, whose dense tannins have a strong grip for now, enhanced by the lively acidity. No extra flesh here. Best from 2024 through 2042. 630 cases made, 200 cases imported. — BS
• Vinous / Antonio Galloni: 94 Azelia's 2016 Barolo San Rocco shows terrific density and richness, but it is less aromatically expressive than most of the other 2016s in the range. Readers will have to give this at least a few years in bottle for the tannins to soften. Even in the early going, though, the 2016 is deep, powerful and loaded with pedigree. Now that most of Azelia's wines are aged in cask, the influence of small French oak is especially evident.
• Robert Parker: 95 The Azelia 2016 Barolo San Rocco presents broad and sweeping aromatic brush strokes, and the tannins are pronounced in this wine from Serralunga d'Alba. This is probably the bottle you put at the back of your cellar while the others might occupy a more accessible spot for medium to long-term drinking. There is a shallow midpoint between the intensity of the bouquet and the wine's structured finale, but that mid-palate zone will certainly flesh out with more time in the bottle. This wine earns an extra point for longevity. San Rocco was the first vineyard purchased by Luigi Scavino's father in the early 1990s, and the vines are 65 years old on average today. Some 7,600 bottles were released.
Luigi Scavino's Azelia is celebrating a big milestone this year with its centennial anniversary (1920–2020). Five generations of the family have carried forth this winemaking legacy. To mark the occasion, Azelia is releasing a new single-vineyard wine, the 2016 Barolo Cerretta. In 1992, Luigi and his father Lorenzo started leasing a 2.5-hectare parcel in Cerretta (in Serralunga d'Alba). The father and son team replanted the site completely, installing new trellising poles and wires, and they ripped up the soil and added rainfall drainage. The Scavinos did all this work and made all these investments at great personal cost, since the land lease would expire one day. However, 12 years later, in 2004, the family succeeded in purchasing the parcel. This site is very special to them, as it is the first vineyard created completely from scratch with massal selection by the Scavinos. Initially, the fruit was used in the classic Barolo blend (a blend of seven crus). Now, nearly 30 years later, Cerretta is finally bottled as a single-vineyard wine, just in time to blow out 100 candles on the winery birthday cake.