A great introduction to the superb suite of Cogno Baroli, Montegrilli is an homage to Elvio Cogno’s grandfather. It differentiates itself from Barolo due to fermentation in stainless steel and no oak handling. This confers a mineral freshness while evincing a visceral, fruit-forward immediacy. Always red fruit scented with fecund strawberry notes and floral overtones, the undercarriage is, nevertheless, quintessential Nebbiolo: fibrous tannins, crunchy acidity and a whiff of sandalwood.
Lots of impressive red, blue and darker fruit for a nebbiolo; this is brimming with boysenberries, blueberries, violets and lavender. Medium-bodied and quite chewy for this category with pretty structure and drive.
91 points, JamesSuckling.com (November 2019)
The 2018 Langhe Nebbiolo Montegrilli is incredibly thin and light, with little mass or density at all. It's very easy drinking and as clean as a whistle. This feather-light red is a treat. It's rare to see this sort of expression of Nebbiolo, and I love it. I'm thinking it might pair well with paper-thin bresaola on bread.
89+ points, Wine Advocate (June 2019)
Strawberry, dried cherry, mint, sweet tobacco and cedar all give the 2018 Langhe Nebbiolo Montegrilli lovely aromatic presence. Gracious and medium in body, the 2018 offers good complexity in an accessible, early drinking style.
88 points, Vinous (March 2020)
Macerated cherry and raspberry flavors hold center court here, with accents of licorice, juniper and tobacco. Firms up on the finish.
88 points, Wine Spectator (December 2019)
Over the last several vintages the estate of Elvio Cogno has unequivocally thrust
itself into the pantheon of top Barolo makers. Following extensive experience at the Marcarini estate in la Morra, which Cogno co-founded with Giuseppe Marcarini, Cogno returned to his hometown of Novello in 1991, one of the Barolo zone’s eleven villages. Marcarini’s passing and the commercial approach of his grandchildren, the inheritors, left Cogno feeling rudderless. Cogno’s new mission was simple: to revive the most important estate in the town’s greatest–Ravera!
To say that Cogno succeeded is an understatement.
The estate is comprised of eleven hectares, producing 37,000 bottles annually. It is situated right in the middle of the Ravera cru, propitiously facing south-south-east at 380 metres above sea level. Friable calcareous chinks segue to prized solid limestone. Each Cogno wine hails from Ravera with vine age, parcel, soil structures and clonal makeups differentiating them. And what wines!
Cogno is as noteworthy for the eponymous Barolo Ravera as for the brisk Barolo Cascina Nuova, hewn of younger vine material. Yet it is often the Barolo Riserva Vigna Elena, crafted with the rare Nebbiolo sub-variety Rosé from a sandier plot, that blows minds! The Cogno estate is as daring as it is consistently excellent.
The estate is now run by Elvio’s daughter Nadia and son-in-law Valter Fissore. Fissore learned the ropes under Elvio, the master. Following a flirtation with modernity, Fissore has come to embrace a traditional gait incorporating a return to large Slavonian casks and ambient fermentations using the hallowed submerged cap technique, all in the presence of impeccably ripe fruit to facilitate noble tannins. Abstemious yields, attenuated macerations and minimal sulphur-dioxide as a means to encapsulate a culture of organic viticulture, while expressing the most prized plots of Ravera, are de rigeur.