Az. Agr. Edoardo Sobrino

2004 Barbera d'Alba Vigna Carzello DOC


Italy: Piedmont

Offer Expired:Sep 07, 2008 at 11:59 pm
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Mission Codename: Hot on the trail

Operative: Agent White

Objective: Continue the search for Agent Baco Noir and find some great wines along the way.

Mission Status: Ongoing…

Current Winery: Azienda Agricola Edoardo Sobrino

Wine Subject: 2004 Barbera d"Alba Vigna Carzello DOC

Winemaker: Edoardo Sobrino


Barbera is the most cultivated vine in the Piedmont, and often times the higher yields result in wines that are just average and disappointingly flabby. That being said, the Barbera from the vineyards surrounding the village Alba are famous for a reason. These exceptional wines rival their brethren Nebbiolo-based Barolo and Barbaresco.

The wine production of Barbera d’Alba DOC is just a fraction of the total production of Barbera and those coming from named vineyards like today’s selection represent the best of the lot. These wines are generally full-bodied, rich and capable of cellaring for about 5-15 years. This wine comes from the Carzello vineyards in Diano d’Alba, just south of the village of Alba.

Wine Spies Tasting Profile:

Look – Deep and dark purple with a dark, almost black core and garnet to ruby edges. Slow thin legs cling to the edge of the glass when swirled.

Smell – Bold ripe berries (blackberry, blueberry, raspberry and even some black cherry) lead off over a base of subtle spicy black pepper, earth, toasted vanilla component and soft Italian zesty tar. A floral rose aroma also emerges as this wine opens.

Feel – This full-bodied wine is smooth and dry with a secondary kick of medium-firm tannins and moderate acidity. A touch of spice and minerality hits on the tip of the tongue.

Taste – A blend of jammy and fresh ripe dark blackberries and blueberries layered over toasted oak, earthy notes, cigar tobacco and a hint of spice. The flavors of this wine are well integrated and balanced.

Finish – This wine finishes with finesse, a balanced blend of both its fruit and earthy components.

Conclusion – Too often Barbera tends to be a little light on both flavor and quality. This exceptional single vineyard gem from Edoardo Sobrino is the exact opposite. Full-bodied, rich and flavorful. This wine strikes a nice balance between new-world fruit forward wines and the more earthy old-world styles. This wine will appeal to lovers of the classic wines of Italy and is a great wine to begin your own Italian wine journey if you haven’t yet explored these great wines.

Mission Report:

Top Secret Message to Agent Baco Noir:


A SMS message came in just as I was enjoying a pleasant lunch and wine tasting at Retrogusto Wine in the village of Alba. The message, from a blocked number was simple:


I had a hunch that the message was from Baco, but I couldn’t be sure. It had all the markings, she loved the chase and loved the great wines of Italy. Now I had to figure out who or what EDO was.

Not wanting to waste any time, I forwarded the message to HQ for analysis and I jumped on my Vespa to head down to Diano D’Alba. Figuring that by the time I arrived at the village which is just south of Alba I’d have an answer.

The message came in quickly. HQ had determined that there was an 87.69% probability the EDO was the young upstart winemaker Edoardo Sobrino. Edo was famous for building an amazing cellar and collection of Italian wines, and had quickly made a name for himself as an exceptional winemaker.

HQ had forwarded me the address of Edo’s farm on Via Farinetti and when I arrived I noticed a turquoise blue Vespa in the drive. Strange vehicle for a winery, I thought. I walked up the farmhouse and the door was ajar. A slowly pushed the door open and to my pleasant surprise, Edo was standing there with a glass of wine ready for me.

“Agent Red told me you where on your way, I think I have something you’ve been looking for…”, he said, “first, you taste this wine…” as he handed me the glass.

I took the glass, gave it a quick visual inspection, then a swirl and a long deep sniff. I paused for just a second and smiled. Then a sip which I swished around in my mouth.

“Barbera? But almost a perfect balance between new- and old-world”, this was truly an exceptional Barbera.

“Yes, now, let’s toast my new friend”, just then, from behind a chair, Agent Baco Noir stood up and in her signature Italian pumps strutted over with a glass in hand and raised it in a toast.

“To the game!”

Wine Spies Vineyard Check:

The location of the Carzello Vineyard in the Diano d’Alba suburb of Alba can be seen in this satellite photo.

The location of the Azienda Agricola Edoardo Sobrino can be seen in this satellite photo.

What the Winery Says


The Wine Spies have secured a very limited and exclusive allocation of this wine directly from the importer. This wine is due to arrive at our TOP SECRET warehouse later this week and thus this wine will most likely ship on September 15th. Should you have any questions please contact us at

Awards & Accolades:

Sobrino wines combines power and elegance. The Barolo from vieilles vignes of Monvigliero conveys impressive floral notes (roses) and wild red berries, together with slight tobacco hints. All the wines show amazing ripeness and freshness, with perfectly integrated tannins. Fabio Zanzucchi

About This Wine:

Purple intense and deep. At the nose the red fruit notes are very concetrated, like strawberry, cherry, raspberry, blackberry jam. In the mouth is hot, very balanced with light noble tannins and the return of smell aromas is on the middlepalate for a lot of seconds. The acidity of Barbera vines is equilibrate but intense and ideal for a piedmontese cheese plate.

The Estate:

Edoardo “Edo” Sobrino started this estate in 1999. He owns about 9 ha and produces only 20000 bottles, that means a mere 15 Hl / Ha, about 0.60 kg / vine.
Dolcetto, Barbera and Nebbiolo vineyards are in Diano D’Alba, while the Nebbiolo for Barolo is in Monvigliero cru close to Verduno. First vintage of Barolo was 2001.


Edo thinks that the only way to express the uniqueness of a terroir, is to work the vineyards with organic approach, mantain the soils alive and active and limit the production as much as possible without compromizing the natural balance of the vines.

The People:

Edo has been always fond of fine wines, he has a phenomenal private cellar and inspired by the amazing Barolos produced by Roberto Voerzio he decided to devote his life to the vineyards.

About The Winery:

Well-known entrepreneur of the building field, largely fascinated with and a consumer of Piedmontese red wine, Edoardo Sobrino gained small lots of vineyards in Verduno and Diano d’Alba and built a small but functional cellar. At present it produces Piedmontese red wine, Barolo, Barbera d’Alba and Langhe Dolcetto.

Technical Analysis:

Container: Vinified in stainless steel tanks

Temperature: 86°F

Temperature control: Refrigerated tanks

Length of maceration: 12-14 days

Method of extraction: Skin contact/punchdowns

Malolactic fermentation: Totally in stainless s.tanks

Alcoholic fermentation: Only natural yeast

Filtration: Unfiltered

Aging before bottling: 18 months in 100% new French oak barriques

Aging: 6 months in tank

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