I have no doubt that the 1989 Bartolo Mascarello Barolo will prove to be one of the greatest vintages in the long and consistently excellent career of this maestro, but it is only just starting to show its secondary layers of complexity and desperately deserves more time in the cellar to really reach its apogee. The bouquet is deep, pure and very promising, offering up a blend of cherries, beef bouillon, roasted gamebirds, a touch of wild bay, complex, autumnal soil tones and a topnote of woodsmoke. On the palate the wine is very pure, full and sappy at the core, with great soil inflection, ripe, fine-grained tannins, outstanding focus and grip and a very, very long, pure and complex finish. It is not a crime to be drinking this wine today- if you have enough bottles remaining in the cellar that you are not going to miss one ten years down the road- but this is a wine that is still climbing and its best days are still several years further out. (Drink between 2016-2060)
Bartolo Mascarello's 1989 Barolo (magnum) is all freshly cut roses, plums, prunes and sweet spices. The aromas and flavors continue to emerge with notable vigor and intensity, framed exquisitely by firm, silky tannins. Grace and class come to mind as apt descriptors for a wine that balances exceptional depth yet also floats on the palate with ethereal qualities that are hard to do justice to on the printed page. The finish is long and wonderfully pure, with overtones of licorice and menthol that invite a second (and third!) taste. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2030.