Driven by a passion for exceptional Nebbiolo, the Travaglini family has been producing remarkable, limited-production wines from their estate in Gattinara for four generations.
They are the foremost producer and largest vineyard owner in this northern region of Piemonte, Italy.
Travaglini Gattinara wines have a distinctive bottle shape, featuring a unique curve that fits naturally in the palm of the hand and serves to catch sediment during decanting. The bottle is now their trademark. Some of the images below highlight this special bottle shape.
Gattinara vineyards were almost all destroyed in the early 1900s due to phylloxera and a devastating hail storm in 1905. The family replanted vines in the 1920s and pioneered research into improving viticulture in the area. Today there are about 100 hectares in total of Gattinara vines, and Travaglini farms 59 of those hectares. Essentially, they produce over 50% of Gattinara wines. Exports make up 65% of Travaglini’s production. The United States is the #1 export market.
Last year I had the pleasure of attending an afternoon luncheon with Cinzia and Alessia Travaglini as they showcased their wines against the backdrop of a wonderful meal from Angelini Osteria in Los Angeles.
Top vineyards on the Travaglini estate are where the grapes for this wine are sourced. A zero dosage sparkling wine made from 100% Nebbiolo grapes.
Crunchy red fruit on the nose (cherry and cranberry) plus a hint of sweet oak. Precise fruit and bright acid. I also get a minerality to this wine plus some delicate rose petal notes, classic to Nebbiolo.
A very savory wine. I get sweet spice (from the oak treatment-2 years in Slavonian oak) and a stemmy herbaceous quality. A strong tannic background due to longer skin contact.
This wine is a blend of three single-vineyard “cru” sites on the Travaglini estate. The wine is aged for 4 years in Slavonian oak casks. During the final year in cask, 20% of the wine is removed and aged separately in barrique before being blended back with the balance of the wine. The final blend then rests in the bottle for 10 months.
Deep, dark, concentrated red fruit. Medium + smooth, well-integrated tannins. I get a little funk in my glass, which is a good thing.
Bright, juicy red fruit, sweet spice, and pepper note. Complex yet elegant. Earthiness abounds.
A slight bricking in the glass, indicating the age. An elegantly aged red wine, with savory notes (i.e. underbrush) starting to emerge. So understated. Almost a whisper of a wine.
Grapes are hand-harvested and then dried for 100 days in a naturally ventilated storage area. Really ripe, almost sweet fruit on the palate plus sweet baking spices.
Many of these wines are available in the US.