In 2014, Gianluca Grasso opted to bottle one Barolo that is a blend of juice from Gavarini and Chiniera. Grasso's 2014 Barolo is a beautiful wine that captures the personality of the vintage. Lithe, perfumed and aromatic, the 2014 exudes class from start to finish. The flavors are wonderfully bright and vibrant, with plenty of red fruit and expressive floral and overtones. The 2014 is a pretty, feminine wine that may very well surprise down the road. The Gavarini fruit saw 25 days on the skins, while fermentation and maceration for the Ginestra lots was 30-45 days, all with submerged cap. When bottling time came, Grasso preferred the blended Barolo to what would have been vineyard designate Gavarini and Ginestra Barolos. The juice from Rüncot went into the the Langhe Nebbiolo, which is the custom when the flagship Riserva is not bottled.
92 points, Antonio Galloni (February 2018)
The cherry and strawberry aromas, highlighting by a brunt-orange and violet undertone. Full to medium body, chewy tannins and a fresh, vivid finish. Drink or hold.
92 points, James Suckling (September 2018)
This is a new wine that was only made in this vintage to address low yields and difficult growing conditions. In truth, it was also produced in 2002 for the same reasons. The 2014 Barolo is a blend of Nebbiolo grapes from the Grasso family's best vineyard sites: Casa Maté and Gavarini Chiniera. In a very happy and nostalgic way, this wine brings us back in time to when Barolo was more streamlined and linear in style. The limestone-rich soils of Gavarini Chiniera give the wine its aromatic profile with delicate tones of wild berry and blue flower. The Casa Maté site provides the robust texture and structure you taste here. This wine was designed to be offered at a lower price point (that's great news for us!). It offers an accessible personality that makes it easy to enjoy at your favorite Italian restaurant. I put the plus sign next to my score to underline the value you get here.
92+ points, Monica Larner (June 2018)
No crus this year, all blended into this single Barolo. Healthy mid ruby. Minty hints and just a tiny bit candied on the nose. Touch of Band-Aid. Orange peel, cherry compote and lots of brisk acidity.
16 points, Walter Speller (March 2018)
Elio Grasso is a wine producer situated in Monforte d’Alba in the heart of Piedmont. As a young man, Elio was always a great admirer of the Conterno estate. So in 1979 when he gave up his banking job in Turin to move to the family property in Monforte d’Alba, Aldo Conterno helped him get started. The Grasso family owns vineyards in some of the best parts of the region, some of which have been family owned and worked for more than a century. All wines are made from estate owned grapes including Nebbiolo, Dolcetto and Barbera and more recently Chardonnay. Grasso produces three Barolo vineyard selections: Gavarini Vigna Chiniera, Ginestra Vigna Casa Maté and Rüncot. Over the years the Grasso style has evolved to a position somewhere between the classic and modernist expressions of Barolo. Langhe Nebbiolo, Dolcetto d'Alba, Barbera d'Alba and Langhe Chardonnay are also produced.
Elio Grasso... 'is highly respected by other Barolo producers. Elio Grasso and his son Gianluca continue to release beautifully perfumed and structured Barolo, both in a traditional style, with the Gavarini Chiniera and Ginestra Casa Maté Barolos, while the riserva Runcot is a more modern style. Great expressions of Monforte terroir; these examples of Barolo are as honest as you can find. -- Tom Hyland, The 25 Best producers of Barolo, Forbes, November 2018.