Pied­mont mourns pass­ing of Barolo gi­ant Ri­naldi

Decanter - - A MONTH IN WINE -

Giuseppe RI­NALDI, One of the most re­spected and out­spo­ken pro­duc­ers in Pied­mont, died on 2 Septem­ber in Barolo, at the age of 70.

Son of Bat­tista Ri­naldi, mayor of Barolo in the early 1970s, Giuseppe orig­i­nally grad­u­ated as a vet­eri­nar­ian, but at the age of 29 he be­came in­volved in his fam­ily’s win­ery. he was known to friends as Beppe, and of­ten nick­named ‘Citrico’, mean­ing cit­ric, for his sharp, cut­ting com­ments.

Ri­naldi was the last sur­vivor of an un­com­pro­mis­ing three­some of Barolo pro­duc­ers, along with Teobaldo Cap­pel­lano and Bar­tolo mas­carello. Ri­naldi stood against the rise of ‘ready-to-drink’ Baro­los, ad­vo­cat­ing firm, struc­tured wines made to last.

he favoured long mac­er­a­tion pe­ri­ods and main­tained the use of large, neu­tral Slavo­nian oak ves­sels at a time when many oth­ers turned to new French bar­riques.

Scep­ti­cal of the mGA (men­zione ge­ografica ag­giun­tiva) clas­si­fi­ca­tions of cru vine­yards in­tro­duced in 2011, Ri­naldi never made a sin­gle-vine­yard Barolo. From 1993 he la­belled his Baro­los as ‘Brunate-Le Coste’ and ‘Can­nubi San Lorenzo-Rav­era’.

To­day, Ri­naldi’s rep­u­ta­tion for cre­at­ing out­stand­ing wines will be car­ried on by his daugh­ters, marta and Car­lotta, in charge of the win­ery and the vine­yards re­spec­tively.

‘I ad­mired him and the pu­rity of his Baro­los,’ said Dante Scaglione, a con­sul­tant to Bruno Gi­a­cosa and one of re­gion’s lead­ing wine­mak­ers.

‘he sought depth in Neb­bi­olo with­out any ar­ti­fi­cial in­ter­ven­tion. he was able to ex­press the true mas­cu­line essence of Barolo.’

Ri­naldi’s pass­ing was marked and re­spects paid at a me­mo­rial ser­vice held at his home on 5 Septem­ber.

Giuseppe Ri­naldi

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