Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

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Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#1 Post by Billbell »

Does anyone have any familiarity with these wines and how they age? I'm thinking of buying the 16s but don't have any personal experience with the producer. I'm a fan of Brovia, G Rinaldi, Burlotto, and others of that ilk.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#2 Post by Rory K. »

Haven't had the 16s but this is an undervalued, traditional-leaning producer that I'm a big fan of. I've had a couple 11s and 10s (Bussia) and was delighted by them. Given the consistent quality in 16, you probably can't go wrong if the price is right for you. Their Villero is the best for long aging.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#3 Post by R. Frankel »

I sampled the 2010s and bought a handful. Definitely old school, classic leaning. I thought the Villero had more aging potential, though my guess is that these are more 10-20 year wines rather than 25-30. At these prices why not buy one and try it? These are not likely to disappear from the market too quickly.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#4 Post by Fred Davis »

Billbell wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 10:38 am Does anyone have any familiarity with these wines and how they age? I'm thinking of buying the 16s but don't have any personal experience with the producer. I'm a fan of Brovia, G Rinaldi, Burlotto, and others of that ilk.
It's my understanding they age well, but I haven't tried one yet. I bought some of the 2010 (classico) recently and holding them for longer term storage. I've had some of the 16s at the winery. Giacomo said the Bussia is his signature wine and it was our most favorite that we tried.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#5 Post by ybarselah »

chambers street in NYC just got a nice cache of older ones.

https://www.chambersstwines.com/Article ... newsletter
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#6 Post by Sh@n A »

I tried the 2016 once at an industry event. The 2016 Villero is much lighter, and slightly more herbal, than the 2016 Brovia rendition. I bought a couple, but do not put the Villero in the same league as the OP's original list. That said, the price is way less.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#7 Post by michael ottesen »

The lange nebbiolo 2018!is flat out delisious
Juicey and ready to drink
As Said under the radar traditional Barolo
Good value for money
I have purchased a mixed case of Busia-Cannubi
And Villero 2016

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#8 Post by Fred Davis »

ybarselah wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:16 pm chambers street in NYC just got a nice cache of older ones.

https://www.chambersstwines.com/Article ... newsletter
I'd be wary of any of these at the prevailing prices. I've been burned by Chambers St. in the past and so I'm biased. Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently hight cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars. I bought an old vintage from them that was completely undrinkable and I later told the clerk at their store about my experience. He basically said that people who buy these old vintages are doing so more for the novelty and experience of drinking a really old wine instead of the actual quality in the bottle. Indeed, I ended up with the experience and they ended up with the money. Just know you're paying for the novelty of being able to say "we're drinking a 1968 Barolo," regardless of whether you have to pour it down the sink because it's undrinkable.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#9 Post by Rob M »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm
ybarselah wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:16 pm chambers street in NYC just got a nice cache of older ones.

https://www.chambersstwines.com/Article ... newsletter
I'd be wary of any of these at the prevailing prices. I've been burned by Chambers St. in the past and so I'm biased. Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently hight cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars. I bought an old vintage from them that was completely undrinkable and I later told the clerk at their store about my experience. He basically said that people who buy these old vintages are doing so more for the novelty and experience of drinking a really old wine instead of the actual quality in the bottle. Indeed, I ended up with the experience and they ended up with the money. Just know you're paying for the novelty of being able to say "we're drinking a 1968 Barolo," regardless of whether you have to pour it down the sink because it's undrinkable.
I disagree with this assessment of Chambers Street. Their provenance is good in my experience and their service is also good if there is an issue. You have to know what you're buying. A 1968 Barolo is probably not going to be good now no matter what the storage was, it's a below average vintage. If you buy a 1968 Barolo, you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine.

At this point I generally prefer vintages that are more youthful, but when I was starting out a few years ago I bought a lot of good older vintages - 1958, 1964, 1967, 1970, 1971 - from Chambers St and had very good experiences with them.

If someone wants a birth year 1968 or 1965 or whatever wine, it's good in my view that market exists. If you want to drink good older Barolo or Barbaresco, it's fairly easy to know which vintages were good and which weren't.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#10 Post by Greg K »

I tasted the 16s at the cantina last fall and liked them a lot, the Villero in particular. I agree it's a bit liter than the Brovia rendition, but still very good. The Bussia Riserva has a lot more power (I personally prefer the Villero though).
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#11 Post by Fred Davis »

As a follow up, that Chambers link you included has them selling the Giacomo Fenocchio 2010 for $69.99. I bought same bottle from a retailer a couple of months ago for $30. Again, Chambers is totally uncompetitive--and oftentimes by a lot.

Second, let's look at the first item on that list: 1 bottle of Fenocchio, Giacomo 1979 Barolo Riserva Bussia Sottana for $124.99. Not knowing the provenance, what are the chances this bottle has been stored perfectly in some unknown person's cellar (and any other places it's been) for the last 40+ years. 10%, maybe 20%? If there's a 10% chance, then this is like pricing a bottle of this wine that is knowingly in perfect condition at $1,249.90. Would anyone buy this at that price?

Maybe the same can be said about buying wine at auctions (I don't know, I've never participated), but with Chambers and its reputation, I feel like it automatically lends a degree of credibility to this roll-the-dice practice.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#12 Post by Rob M »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:07 pm As a follow up, that Chambers link you included has them selling the Giacomo Fenocchio 2010 for $69.99. I bought same bottle from a retailer a couple of months ago for $30. Again, Chambers is totally uncompetitive--and oftentimes by a lot.

Second, let's look at the first item on that list: 1 bottle of Fenocchio, Giacomo 1979 Barolo Riserva Bussia Sottana for $124.99. Not knowing the provenance, what are the chances this bottle has been stored perfectly in some unknown person's cellar (and any other places it's been) for the last 40+ years. 10%, maybe 20%? If there's a 10% chance, then this is like pricing a bottle of this wine that is knowingly in perfect condition at $1,249.90. Would anyone buy this at that price?

Maybe the same can be said about buying wine at auctions (I don't know, I've never participated), but with Chambers and its reputation, I feel like it automatically lends a degree of credibility to this roll-the-dice practice.
Fred your probabilities are ridiculously off vs. my experiences, with Chambers St or other retailers or auctions. I would say 90%+ of old bottles from Chambers St are in "good shape", by which I mean the wine comes across as I expect for the age and quality level of the producer, vintage. If it's not in good shape, you contact them and get a refund very quickly.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#13 Post by Fred Davis »

Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:57 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm
ybarselah wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:16 pm chambers street in NYC just got a nice cache of older ones.

https://www.chambersstwines.com/Article ... newsletter
I'd be wary of any of these at the prevailing prices. I've been burned by Chambers St. in the past and so I'm biased. Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently hight cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars. I bought an old vintage from them that was completely undrinkable and I later told the clerk at their store about my experience. He basically said that people who buy these old vintages are doing so more for the novelty and experience of drinking a really old wine instead of the actual quality in the bottle. Indeed, I ended up with the experience and they ended up with the money. Just know you're paying for the novelty of being able to say "we're drinking a 1968 Barolo," regardless of whether you have to pour it down the sink because it's undrinkable.
I disagree with this assessment of Chambers Street. Their provenance is good in my experience and their service is also good if there is an issue. You have to know what you're buying. A 1968 Barolo is probably not going to be good now no matter what the storage was, it's a below average vintage. If you buy a 1968 Barolo, you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine.

At this point I generally prefer vintages that are more youthful, but when I was starting out a few years ago I bought a lot of good older vintages - 1958, 1964, 1967, 1970, 1971 - from Chambers St and had very good experiences with them.

If someone wants a birth year 1968 or 1965 or whatever wine, it's good in my view that market exists. If you want to drink good older Barolo or Barbaresco, it's fairly easy to know which vintages were good and which weren't.

Do you think an honest store should have a disclaimer then for any old wines it sells that are not from the several outstanding vintage years? Something like, "you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine." I mean, it's not like they're selling these bottles for $10 where a disclaimer may seem redundant.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#14 Post by Markus S »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm
ybarselah wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:16 pm chambers street in NYC just got a nice cache of older ones.

https://www.chambersstwines.com/Article ... newsletter
I... Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently hight cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars.
High cost structure? And still complaining because they gave your money back? Gee...
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#15 Post by Fred Davis »

Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:14 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:07 pm As a follow up, that Chambers link you included has them selling the Giacomo Fenocchio 2010 for $69.99. I bought same bottle from a retailer a couple of months ago for $30. Again, Chambers is totally uncompetitive--and oftentimes by a lot.

Second, let's look at the first item on that list: 1 bottle of Fenocchio, Giacomo 1979 Barolo Riserva Bussia Sottana for $124.99. Not knowing the provenance, what are the chances this bottle has been stored perfectly in some unknown person's cellar (and any other places it's been) for the last 40+ years. 10%, maybe 20%? If there's a 10% chance, then this is like pricing a bottle of this wine that is knowingly in perfect condition at $1,249.90. Would anyone buy this at that price?

Maybe the same can be said about buying wine at auctions (I don't know, I've never participated), but with Chambers and its reputation, I feel like it automatically lends a degree of credibility to this roll-the-dice practice.
Fred your probabilities are ridiculously off vs. my experiences, with Chambers St or other retailers or auctions. I would say 90%+ of old bottles from Chambers St are in "good shape", by which I mean the wine comes across as I expect for the age and quality level of the producer, vintage. If it's not in good shape, you contact them and get a refund very quickly.
TBF, I have not bought enough of them to make a statistically significant assessment.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#16 Post by Rob M »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:14 pm
Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:57 pm
I disagree with this assessment of Chambers Street. Their provenance is good in my experience and their service is also good if there is an issue. You have to know what you're buying. A 1968 Barolo is probably not going to be good now no matter what the storage was, it's a below average vintage. If you buy a 1968 Barolo, you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine.
Do you think an honest store should have a disclaimer then for any old wines it sells that are not from the several outstanding vintage years? Something like, "you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine." I mean, it's not like they're selling these bottles for $10 where a disclaimer may seem redundant.
[/quote]

No I don't think that is their responsibility. If you ask someone at the store about what were good vintages, I think they should be honest with you, but I don't think bottles need a disclaimer especially in the age where you can google vintages, or search a bottle on Cellartracker, in a minute.

If you want to see a rip off, how about restaurants that list awful vintages of wines that have become cult wines, like Bartolo Mascarello or something, for $1,000+. I think I've seen 1983 Bartolo for $1,000+ at some place this year. Terrible vintage.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#17 Post by Fred Davis »

Markus S wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:17 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm
ybarselah wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:16 pm chambers street in NYC just got a nice cache of older ones.

https://www.chambersstwines.com/Article ... newsletter
I... Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently hight cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars.
High cost structure? And still complaining because they gave your money back? Gee...
Where did I say they gave me my money back? They didn't. I took the loss.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#18 Post by Fred Davis »

Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:18 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:14 pm
Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:57 pm
I disagree with this assessment of Chambers Street. Their provenance is good in my experience and their service is also good if there is an issue. You have to know what you're buying. A 1968 Barolo is probably not going to be good now no matter what the storage was, it's a below average vintage. If you buy a 1968 Barolo, you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine.
Do you think an honest store should have a disclaimer then for any old wines it sells that are not from the several outstanding vintage years? Something like, "you should be expecting a novelty and not a good wine." I mean, it's not like they're selling these bottles for $10 where a disclaimer may seem redundant.
No I don't think that is their responsibility. If you ask someone at the store about what were good vintages, I think they should be honest with you, but I don't think bottles need a disclaimer especially in the age where you can google vintages, or search a bottle on Cellartracker, in a minute.

If you want to see a rip off, how about restaurants that list awful vintages of wines that have become cult wines, like Bartolo Mascarello or something, for $1,000+. I think I've seen 1983 Bartolo for $1,000+ at some place this year. Terrible vintage.
[/quote]

Restaurants are in a different league of ripoff. At least with them, you're expecting it. But that's not a good business model either.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#19 Post by Markus S »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:18 pm
Markus S wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:17 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm

I... Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently hight cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars.
High cost structure? And still complaining because they gave your money back? Gee...
Where did I say they gave me my money back? They didn't. I took the loss.
You didn't have to, as they say they will refund bad bottles.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#20 Post by Kevin G. »

Anyone have experience with the Castellero bottling?
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#21 Post by Fred Davis »

Markus S wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 4:57 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:18 pm
Markus S wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:17 pm

High cost structure? And still complaining because they gave your money back? Gee...
Where did I say they gave me my money back? They didn't. I took the loss.
You didn't have to, as they say they will refund bad bottles.
They didn't and had multiple chances to offer to do so. I didn't ask either because if they're not going to offer, I'm fine with taking responsibility for my decisions. But I'm also free to choose to not shop there anymore, which I don't.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#22 Post by Pat Burton »

I've had great experiences with Chambers. Any off bottle of old wine has been immediately refunded without request. Your experience with Chambers is confusing.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#23 Post by John Morris »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm .... I've been burned by Chambers St. in the past and so I'm biased. Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently high cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars.
I'm not sure where you get the idea they have a high cost structure. On current-release wines, you can often find a lower price in NY, but they're not wildly out of line; just not on the forefront of discounting. But a high proportion of what they sell now they import themselves, eliminating middlemen, so their cost structure is actually low, and many of those wines offer good value as well as high quality.
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:17 pm
Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:14 pm Fred your probabilities are ridiculously off vs. my experiences, with Chambers St or other retailers or auctions. I would say 90%+ of old bottles from Chambers St are in "good shape", by which I mean the wine comes across as I expect for the age and quality level of the producer, vintage. If it's not in good shape, you contact them and get a refund very quickly.
TBF, I have not bought enough of them to make a statistically significant assessment.
Then maybe you should not be opining about the quality of their offerings. Is it just one bad bottle that put you in such a foul mood?

I've bought many old wines from them and have had very good luck. There are dozens of other Berserkers who will testify to the same experience. And on a couple of occasions where the wine was far over the hill or corked, they cheerfully refunded my money.
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 5:16 pm
Markus S wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 4:57 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:18 pm
Where did I say they gave me my money back? They didn't. I took the loss.
You didn't have to, as they say they will refund bad bottles.
They didn't and had multiple chances to offer to do so. I didn't ask either because if they're not going to offer, I'm fine with taking responsibility for my decisions. But I'm also free to choose to not shop there anymore, which I don't.
They guarantee their old wines, which gives them an incentive to choose carefully, which they do. Sorry you didn't know about their refund policy.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#24 Post by Fred Davis »

Pat Burton wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 5:29 pm I've had great experiences with Chambers. Any off bottle of old wine has been immediately refunded without request. Your experience with Chambers is confusing.
I was perplexed as well! I had a positive customer experience with them prior to that instance. They had many chance to offer me a refund or store credit and didn't after expressing my disappointment.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#25 Post by Max K »

Pat Burton wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 5:29 pm I've had great experiences with Chambers. Any off bottle of old wine has been immediately refunded without request. Your experience with Chambers is confusing.
I second (or third, or fourth) this sentiment - I have bought and enjoyed bottles going back to the '50s from Chambers street, many of which have delivered magical experiences, and in the few cases where bottles have been DOA they refunded without question. Jaimie Wolf, John McIlwain, and the other staff I've interacted with have all been great.

Fred - I'm sorry to hear that you had a bad experience, but that is an outlier that is entirely at odds with my many, many interactions with them over the last ~7 years.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#26 Post by Fred Davis »

John Morris wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 5:37 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 12:44 pm .... I've been burned by Chambers St. in the past and so I'm biased. Sure, they're knowledgable, but they're completely price uncompetitive in most recent vintages because of their inherently high cost structure so they've tried to differentiate themselves by going into the niche of selling older vintages sourced from peoples' cellars.
I'm not sure where you get the idea they have a high cost structure. On current-release wines, you can often find a lower price in NY, but they're not wildly out of line; just not on the forefront of discounting. But a high proportion of what they sell now they import themselves, eliminating middlemen, so their cost structure is actually low, and many of those wines offer good value as well as high quality.
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:17 pm
Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:14 pm Fred your probabilities are ridiculously off vs. my experiences, with Chambers St or other retailers or auctions. I would say 90%+ of old bottles from Chambers St are in "good shape", by which I mean the wine comes across as I expect for the age and quality level of the producer, vintage. If it's not in good shape, you contact them and get a refund very quickly.
TBF, I have not bought enough of them to make a statistically significant assessment.
Then maybe you should not be opining about the quality of their offerings. Is it just one bad bottle that put you in such a foul mood?

I've bought many old wines from them and have had very good luck. There are dozens of other Berserkers who will testify to the same experience. And on a couple of occasions where the wine was far over the hill or corked, they cheerfully refunded my money.
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 5:16 pm
Markus S wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 4:57 pm

You didn't have to, as they say they will refund bad bottles.
They didn't and had multiple chances to offer to do so. I didn't ask either because if they're not going to offer, I'm fine with taking responsibility for my decisions. But I'm also free to choose to not shop there anymore, which I don't.
They guarantee their old wines, which gives them an incentive to choose carefully, which they do. Sorry you didn't know about their refund policy.
1) Among other reasons, having a storefront in Tribeca contributes to a high-cost structure--that's extremely expensive. So if they sell the same bottle as another store which does not have similar costs (e.g. upstate NY or NJ), they have to sell that bottle at a higher price, all else equal. Then, of course--and this is not specific to them--if the bottle gets shipped from an out-of-state store, it's possible to save an extra 10% or so on tax. I'd hate to be a commodity retailer in Manhattan competing with stores that sell the same stuff with much lower cost structures. Even if Chambers sells bottles they only have access to, those bottles still compete with other wines, in general, as a matter of opportunity cost. Finally, find some wines they sell that competing non-Manhattan stores sell as well and I'll show you some big price differences. Why do you think those differences exist, consistently, if not for a higher cost structure?

2) I stated my opinion with the disclaimer. If many other people have good experiences, then my opinion will be given low weight by others. That is fine. I'm not trying to hurt the store, but be upfront about my own experience.

3) I did know their policy and wanted to see if they would honor it without me asking them to. They didn't. It's their store and they control the customer experience and they know what they're doing.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#27 Post by Sh@n A »

I once had to return a bad bottle to Chambers. A member of their sales staff suggested the bottle was not bad and could not be refunded, but the next day another member of their sales staff said that member erred and apologetically/immediately credited the bottle. I consider them one of the most upstanding of the NYC wine shops and enjoy buying from them, and have total faith in buying their older bottles going forward. No one else that I am aware of even has such a policy at all! They have been willing to execute complicated special orders for me, without any fee. And they protect client allocations of wine, even if those clients are not whales. Interesting offline tasting events to boot.
Last edited by Sh@n A on September 22nd, 2020, 8:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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#28 Post by Todd Tucker »

Max K wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 7:35 pm
Pat Burton wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 5:29 pm I've had great experiences with Chambers. Any off bottle of old wine has been immediately refunded without request. Your experience with Chambers is confusing.
I second (or third, or fourth) this sentiment - I have bought and enjoyed bottles going back to the '50s from Chambers street, many of which have delivered magical experiences, and in the few cases where bottles have been DOA they refunded without question. Jaimie Wolf, John McIlwain, and the other staff I've interacted with have all been great.

Fred - I'm sorry to hear that you had a bad experience, but that is an outlier that is entirely at odds with my many, many interactions with them over the last ~7 years.

Agreed. Except it's been 12 years for me.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#29 Post by Fred Davis »

I suppose I should reconsider my position on Chambers based on the overwhelmingly positive feedback on this thread regarding their older vintages.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#30 Post by dteng »

You will be outnumbered as far as Chambers experience by a large margin.
They have a great rep here and for good reason.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#31 Post by F.Daner »

Looks like AG agreed with you Fred on the Bussia. It's his highest rated GF 2016.

I have the 15 Villero in the cellar but not looking to open anytime soon.
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 11:36 am
Billbell wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 10:38 am Does anyone have any familiarity with these wines and how they age? I'm thinking of buying the 16s but don't have any personal experience with the producer. I'm a fan of Brovia, G Rinaldi, Burlotto, and others of that ilk.
It's my understanding they age well, but I haven't tried one yet. I bought some of the 2010 (classico) recently and holding them for longer term storage. I've had some of the 16s at the winery. Giacomo said the Bussia is his signature wine and it was our most favorite that we tried.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#32 Post by F.Daner »

Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.
Billbell wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 10:38 am Does anyone have any familiarity with these wines and how they age? I'm thinking of buying the 16s but don't have any personal experience with the producer. I'm a fan of Brovia, G Rinaldi, Burlotto, and others of that ilk.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#33 Post by Doug Schulman »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:17 pm
Rob M wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:14 pm
Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 1:07 pm As a follow up, that Chambers link you included has them selling the Giacomo Fenocchio 2010 for $69.99. I bought same bottle from a retailer a couple of months ago for $30. Again, Chambers is totally uncompetitive--and oftentimes by a lot.

Second, let's look at the first item on that list: 1 bottle of Fenocchio, Giacomo 1979 Barolo Riserva Bussia Sottana for $124.99. Not knowing the provenance, what are the chances this bottle has been stored perfectly in some unknown person's cellar (and any other places it's been) for the last 40+ years. 10%, maybe 20%? If there's a 10% chance, then this is like pricing a bottle of this wine that is knowingly in perfect condition at $1,249.90. Would anyone buy this at that price?

Maybe the same can be said about buying wine at auctions (I don't know, I've never participated), but with Chambers and its reputation, I feel like it automatically lends a degree of credibility to this roll-the-dice practice.
Fred your probabilities are ridiculously off vs. my experiences, with Chambers St or other retailers or auctions. I would say 90%+ of old bottles from Chambers St are in "good shape", by which I mean the wine comes across as I expect for the age and quality level of the producer, vintage. If it's not in good shape, you contact them and get a refund very quickly.
TBF, I have not bought enough of them to make a statistically significant assessment.
You’ve only mentioned one bottle and have made a bunch of wild assumptions that are completely baseless. You seem to have some kind of grudge and yet zero knowledge of how they source wines or what the provenance and quality of those wines generally is. I would bet I’ve purchased far more aged wines from Chambers St than you have, and my results have almost always been good. Your whole stance here is irrational and bizarre.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#34 Post by John Morris »

F.Daner wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 2:32 am Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.
Yes, I think Frat. Alessandria is just waiting to be discovered. Their Gramolere, from the other side of the DOCG, in Serralunga, is also very good, in a very different style. Those two wines really reflect their very different sites.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#35 Post by Greg K »

F.Daner wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 2:32 am Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.
Billbell wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 10:38 am Does anyone have any familiarity with these wines and how they age? I'm thinking of buying the 16s but don't have any personal experience with the producer. I'm a fan of Brovia, G Rinaldi, Burlotto, and others of that ilk.
While I like Alessandria's Monvigliero, and it's a very good wine that I buy in good vintages, I don't think it's an alternative to Burlotto's version, which is a very distinct wine.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#36 Post by Jim Hanlon »

Fred Davis wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 10:00 pm I suppose I should reconsider my position on Chambers based on the overwhelmingly positive feedback on this thread regarding their older vintages.
Good on you for being willing to reconsider -- it's become too rare an attribute these days. Chambers Street is one of the very best wine shops not just in NYC, but in the country. Jamie Wolff buys most of these older Italian wines directly from cellars in Italy, which he's usually inspected himself. I've opened dozens of bottles and never had a terrible experience. I had an Accomasso leak once during shipment -- which can happen with old corks and a trip across the country. They offered to refund the bottle if it wasn't sound, but it was.

I will say that how you prepare older Nebbiolo for opening matters a lot. A whole lot. These bottles need to be stood up for at least a week -- some will say much longer. They throw lots of sediment, and sediment diminishes old Nebbiolo quite a bit. The wines should be decanted off their sediment several hours before serving, and then returned to the bottle. It is very rare for an old Nebbiolo to diminish with moderate or even extended aeration. It's amazing to observe a 50-year-old wine improve with air -- even need air -- but this happens often with older Nebbiolo.

Lastly, as has been said upthread -- vintage matters a lot. The weather was more variable and the farming not as dialed in as today. There are years that are lighter and just won't be great wines. In my experience, Chambers Street generally prices those lower, but not at $10. There are folks who want them for birth year, etc. But if you're looking to drink as well as possible, then sticking to the stronger vintages is a good strategy.

Good luck on your second effort. I hope you get a better result.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#37 Post by AAgrawal »

John Morris wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 7:58 am
F.Daner wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 2:32 am Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.
Yes, I think Frat. Alessandria is just waiting to be discovered. Their Gramolere, from the other side of the DOCG, in Serralunga, is also very good, in a very different style. Those two wines really reflect their very different sites.
I’m just starting to try more of these, but I have to say they are not cheap. The Monvigliero is now about $80, which is pretty much the same as Vajra Bricco. I don’t have enough experience with the Monvigliero to decide yet whether it is worth it, but the Vajra Bricco is my standard at that price point and hard to beat. Would be curious to hear from others who have tried more vintages...
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#38 Post by F.Daner »

I love BDV as well but am deep into 16 with some new producers like Alessandria's. I can let you know how it compares in about 6 years [cheers.gif]
AAgrawal wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 12:50 pm
John Morris wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 7:58 am
F.Daner wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 2:32 am Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.
Yes, I think Frat. Alessandria is just waiting to be discovered. Their Gramolere, from the other side of the DOCG, in Serralunga, is also very good, in a very different style. Those two wines really reflect their very different sites.
I’m just starting to try more of these, but I have to say they are not cheap. The Monvigliero is now about $80, which is pretty much the same as Vajra Bricco. I don’t have enough experience with the Monvigliero to decide yet whether it is worth it, but the Vajra Bricco is my standard at that price point and hard to beat. Would be curious to hear from others who have tried more vintages...
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#39 Post by JohnP »

I recently purchased some bottles from Chambers and asked the provenance question. They reassured me on their sourcing and informed me they will refund all bad bottles, assuming the purchase was within a reasonable timeframe.

Back to the Fennocchio discussion, has anyone tried any older vintages? Those 82' riservas looks tempting.

Curious, I went to Vinous and searched the oldest review for Fennocchio, a random 1989 vintage review. AG says "could have been an extraordinary, life-changing wine, but it was marred by dirty barrels." How horrible, lol.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#40 Post by John Morris »

JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 6:04 am .... Curious, I went to Vinous and searched the oldest review for Fennocchio, a random 1989 vintage review. AG says "could have been an extraordinary, life-changing wine, but it was marred by dirty barrels." How horrible, lol.
Yes, I had a bottle or two from the 90s in the mid-2000s and they have a fair deal of VA. I have a high tolerance, and this was at or a tad beyond my tolerance threshold.

The few I've had in recent years have been clean, however.
Last edited by John Morris on September 24th, 2020, 9:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#41 Post by John Morris »

Greg K wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 9:23 am While I like Alessandria's Monvigliero, and it's a very good wine that I buy in good vintages, I don't think it's an alternative to Burlotto's version, which is a very distinct wine.
Agreed. The foot pressing and 60-day maceration of the Burlotto somehow produce a uniquely elegant wine.

FYI, I have a trio of 2012 Monviglieros -- the Burlotto, the Frat. Alessandria and the Scavino -- which I want to try blind with some friends at some point. That will be fun.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#42 Post by Greg K »

John Morris wrote: September 24th, 2020, 6:54 am
Greg K wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 9:23 am While I like Alessandria's Monvigliero, and it's a very good wine that I buy in good vintages, I don't think it's an alternative to Burlotto's version, which is a very distinct wine.
Agreed. The foot pressing and 60-day maceration of the Burlotto somehow produce a uniquely elegant wine.

FYI, I have a trio of 2012 Monviglieros -- the Burlotto, the Frat. Alessandria and the Scavino -- which I want to try blind with some friends at some point. That will be fun.
That would be fun! I'm very curious what Vietti's rendition will be like. I'm not necessarily the biggest Vietti fan, but they're also doing whole cluster, so will be interesting.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#43 Post by Markus S »

AAgrawal wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 12:50 pm
John Morris wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 7:58 am
F.Daner wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 2:32 am Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.
Yes, I think Frat. Alessandria is just waiting to be discovered. Their Gramolere, from the other side of the DOCG, in Serralunga, is also very good, in a very different style. Those two wines really reflect their very different sites.
I’m just starting to try more of these, but I have to say they are not cheap. The Monvigliero is now about $80, which is pretty much the same as Vajra Bricco. I don’t have enough experience with the Monvigliero to decide yet whether it is worth it, but the Vajra Bricco is my standard at that price point and hard to beat. Would be curious to hear from others who have tried more vintages...
Eighty dollars is not bad these days for (very) good Barolo. The top tier is all above $100/bottle and the second tier (Brovia et al) is closing in on that.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#44 Post by E. Vold »

Billbell wrote: September 22nd, 2020, 10:38 am Does anyone have any familiarity with these wines and how they age? I'm thinking of buying the 16s but don't have any personal experience with the producer. I'm a fan of Brovia, G Rinaldi, Burlotto, and others of that ilk.
I had the 2010 Villero recently and was quite happy with the quality also considering the price.
TN:
Ripe and fruity nose. Textbook autumn leaves, cherry and dried fruits. Perfumed and interesting nose of strawberry jam and liquorice in the back together with a slight note of wet wood. Very playful aroma occasionally showing of some floral elements. Harmonious and smooth tannins and excellent energy. I was surprised by how forward this wine was. This is drinking very well now. Would agree with it being a 20 year Barolo and not 30 year one..
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#45 Post by Rob M »

JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 6:04 am I recently purchased some bottles from Chambers and asked the provenance question. They reassured me on their sourcing and informed me they will refund all bad bottles, assuming the purchase was within a reasonable timeframe.

Back to the Fennocchio discussion, has anyone tried any older vintages? Those 82' riservas looks tempting.

Curious, I went to Vinous and searched the oldest review for Fennocchio, a random 1989 vintage review. AG says "could have been an extraordinary, life-changing wine, but it was marred by dirty barrels." How horrible, lol.
I looked up the review you mentioned - but it is for a Riccardo Fenocchio wine - which appears to be a winery that no longer exists - so it appears to be a different Fenocchio.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#46 Post by JohnP »

Rob M wrote: September 24th, 2020, 2:34 pm
JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 6:04 am I recently purchased some bottles from Chambers and asked the provenance question. They reassured me on their sourcing and informed me they will refund all bad bottles, assuming the purchase was within a reasonable timeframe.

Back to the Fennocchio discussion, has anyone tried any older vintages? Those 82' riservas looks tempting.

Curious, I went to Vinous and searched the oldest review for Fennocchio, a random 1989 vintage review. AG says "could have been an extraordinary, life-changing wine, but it was marred by dirty barrels." How horrible, lol.
I looked up the review you mentioned - but it is for a Riccardo Fenocchio wine - which appears to be a winery that no longer exists - so it appears to be a different Fenocchio.
Nice catch! That's good to know as I just took the flyer on a couple 1989 Brussia Riservas from Chambers St. I'll report back later this Fall.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#47 Post by ChrisJames »

JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 3:05 pm
Rob M wrote: September 24th, 2020, 2:34 pm
JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 6:04 am I recently purchased some bottles from Chambers and asked the provenance question. They reassured me on their sourcing and informed me they will refund all bad bottles, assuming the purchase was within a reasonable timeframe.

Back to the Fennocchio discussion, has anyone tried any older vintages? Those 82' riservas looks tempting.

Curious, I went to Vinous and searched the oldest review for Fennocchio, a random 1989 vintage review. AG says "could have been an extraordinary, life-changing wine, but it was marred by dirty barrels." How horrible, lol.
I looked up the review you mentioned - but it is for a Riccardo Fenocchio wine - which appears to be a winery that no longer exists - so it appears to be a different Fenocchio.
Nice catch! That's good to know as I just took the flyer on a couple 1989 Brussia Riservas from Chambers St. I'll report back later this Fall.
For what it is worth, I used to drink Fennocchio a lot back in the early '90s when it was just sitting around in retail as "cheap" Barolo. I always enjoyed it as honest, rustic, old school Nebbiolo without trying to be anything else. I had a chance to visit the winery back around 2004 and spent a good afternoon of drinking wines with the brothers, Claudio and Alberto. My notes from the visit say: Fenocchio’s wines are a bit on the coarse, rustic side, but that is OK with him. As Claudio said, “They are not like those ‘other’ wines that all taste the same.” They are classic family producers with that salt of the earth character and they make good, honest wines of the heart and hands. Their wines won’t make my top ten list, but they are not prices as such either. They only major problem I saw is the barrels might be in need of a good cleaning. I eventually got a bottle of 96 Bussia Riserva for EU19. Claudio perfered the Bussia of all the crus they make (including Cannubi and Villaro) and that "The Riserva doesn’t necessarily see more cask time, but it is only made if one barrel is noticeably better."

Good luck with the 1989! I'd expect it to be very good.

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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#48 Post by JohnP »

ChrisJames wrote: September 24th, 2020, 7:35 pm
JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 3:05 pm
Rob M wrote: September 24th, 2020, 2:34 pm

I looked up the review you mentioned - but it is for a Riccardo Fenocchio wine - which appears to be a winery that no longer exists - so it appears to be a different Fenocchio.
Nice catch! That's good to know as I just took the flyer on a couple 1989 Brussia Riservas from Chambers St. I'll report back later this Fall.
For what it is worth, I used to drink Fennocchio a lot back in the early '90s when it was just sitting around in retail as "cheap" Barolo. I always enjoyed it as honest, rustic, old school Nebbiolo without trying to be anything else. I had a chance to visit the winery back around 2004 and spent a good afternoon of drinking wines with the brothers, Claudio and Alberto. My notes from the visit say: Fenocchio’s wines are a bit on the coarse, rustic side, but that is OK with him. As Claudio said, “They are not like those ‘other’ wines that all taste the same.” They are classic family producers with that salt of the earth character and they make good, honest wines of the heart and hands. Their wines won’t make my top ten list, but they are not prices as such either. They only major problem I saw is the barrels might be in need of a good cleaning. I eventually got a bottle of 96 Bussia Riserva for EU19. Claudio perfered the Bussia of all the crus they make (including Cannubi and Villaro) and that "The Riserva doesn’t necessarily see more cask time, but it is only made if one barrel is noticeably better."

Good luck with the 1989! I'd expect it to be very good.
Thanks Chris! I'm now more hopeful knowing I went with the Brussia Riservas for a few more bucks. I'll report back.
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#49 Post by John Morris »

ChrisJames wrote: September 24th, 2020, 7:35 pm
JohnP wrote: September 24th, 2020, 3:05 pm
Rob M wrote: September 24th, 2020, 2:34 pm

I looked up the review you mentioned - but it is for a Riccardo Fenocchio wine - which appears to be a winery that no longer exists - so it appears to be a different Fenocchio.
Nice catch! That's good to know as I just took the flyer on a couple 1989 Brussia Riservas from Chambers St. I'll report back later this Fall.
For what it is worth, I used to drink Fennocchio a lot back in the early '90s when it was just sitting around in retail as "cheap" Barolo. I always enjoyed it as honest, rustic, old school Nebbiolo without trying to be anything else. I had a chance to visit the winery back around 2004 and spent a good afternoon of drinking wines with the brothers, Claudio and Alberto. My notes from the visit say: Fenocchio’s wines are a bit on the coarse, rustic side, but that is OK with him. As Claudio said, “They are not like those ‘other’ wines that all taste the same.” They are classic family producers with that salt of the earth character and they make good, honest wines of the heart and hands. Their wines won’t make my top ten list, but they are not prices as such either. They only major problem I saw is the barrels might be in need of a good cleaning. I eventually got a bottle of 96 Bussia Riserva for EU19. Claudio perfered the Bussia of all the crus they make (including Cannubi and Villaro) and that "The Riserva doesn’t necessarily see more cask time, but it is only made if one barrel is noticeably better."

Good luck with the 1989! I'd expect it to be very good.
I'm confused. Was it Giacomo or Riccardo Fenocchio you visited?
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Re: Giacomo Fenocchio Barolo

#50 Post by Billbell »

F.Daner wrote: September 23rd, 2020, 2:32 am Have you tried Fratelli Alessandria or F. Rinaldi ? They should be ones you would enjoy based on the list below.

Alessandria's Monvigliero is a more reasonable cost alternative to Burlotto. I haven't had it but purchased on others recommendations.

I do like F. Rinaldi, and Alessandria is on my list to try.

I'd also like to chime in on Chambers Street...I've been able to try a lot of really great Baroli from the 50s, 60s, and 70s as a result of their cellar purchases. I've had a pretty high success rate with good vintages and they've been quick to refund me if I get an undrinkable bottle. I find that their prices on these bottles are low enough that the occasional mediocre but drinkable bottle is worth the risk. Jamie Wolff is also incredibly knowledgeable on Italian wines and can point you to less heralded but excellent producers of these old wines.

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