Franco and Maria Anselma are the current caretakers of Anselma Giacomo in Serralunga. The monumental 2012 Barolo Riserva Felice is a special bottling to mark the 100th anniversary of their estate. It is a 50/50 blend from the vineyards of Collaretto and Vigna Rionda - the latter is on most experts’ short lists of Barolo’s greatest.
The Anselmas are deeply devoted traditional winemakers. In the following photos you see some of their cellar tools like the massive botti for subtle wood aging and cement fermentation tanks as well as the charming tasting room.
Wines like this don't come along every day. Six months ago, when the Chief and I introduced all of our Italian wine discoveries to our Italian wine mavens - Carizzo & Marino - this was the last of 2 dozen wines tasted. We were tired, and so were our palates, but the guys took notice. This is our most expensive Piedmont wine but when I told the boys what it cost, they said it would be a buy even at twice our price.
The only point of disagreement was whether to enjoy it now or wait decades for it to reveal all of its grandeur. As an indication of how well they age, we recently enjoyed an Anselma Barolo that was almost 50 years old.
For now, this is our only offering from Maria & Franco. They were between vintages on everything else. But we won't apologize and strongly recommend that you grab what you can of this pour from history. Here's to traditionalists - long may they bottle!