Giuseppe Cortese 'Rabaja' Barbaresco 2018 - 750ml

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96pts Wine Enthusiast

Fragrant and loaded with finesse, this stunner opens with enticing scents of rose, violet, perfumed berry and camphor. Smooth and extremely elegant, the vibrant, savory palate features juicy red cherry, blood orange and crushed raspberry while star anise and mineral notes suggesting rusty nail—and that's a good thing—add depth. Bright acidity and lithe tannins lend balance and seamless support. It's all about elegance and energy. Best after 2023. Editors' Choice

95pts James Suckling

Already exuding complexity on the nose. The red fruit is colored with a variety of nuances, from dry earth and mild spice to flower petals and light citrus notes. Medium-bodied with well-integrated tannins that sink into the fruit mid palate but re-emerge right at the end to give a firm finish. Despite that, the fruit drive is relentless. Needs time to even out. It will gain more breadth, too. Exceptional Barbaresco that highlights the excellence of the terroir here.

93+pts Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

Giuseppe Cortese's 2018 Barbaresco Rabajà is fresh and vibrant with a tonic, almost electric personality. The wine shows the kind of freshness you get from mineral-rich soils that translate to both the bouquet and the palate. There are points of sour cherry and bramble with rusty nail and some tart orange zest. This release of 17,000 bottles is probably the most successful wine from this estate that I have reviewed over the years.  

90pts Wine Spectator
Ripe cherry and strawberry fruit marks this light-bodied red. Picks up notes of earth, tar and white pepper, leaving a tangy feel on the lingering aftertaste. Best from 2024 through 2037.


Winemaker Notes

This Barbaresco stands out for its harmonious, well-balanced expression, with a luscious floral-scented bouquet, magisterial structure, and lingering taste. At once crisp and elegant, with a succulent mouthfeelthis superb classic lends itself to immediate enjoyment or to medium/long-term cellaring.