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Home > Producers > Italian producers

La Morra, Piedmont

Roberto Voerzio

Roberto Voerzio’s Barolos are some of the richest, deepest and most texturally beautiful wines readers will come across.

Roberto Voerzio had a clear idea of the wines he wanted to make from the outset, but he got a later start than most of his contemporaries because he spent the first years of his career working alongside his brother Gianni before striking out on his own in 1987. Over the years, Roberto acquired parcels in La Morra’s finest sites, giving him a collection of grand cru vineyards matched by few growers.

Despite all of his success, Voerzio remains an essentially simple, down to earth person with a continuous drive to improve that is rare, even in Piedmont. Today Voerzio makes as many as seven single-vineyard Barolos. Voerzio’s fanaticism informs all aspects of production, and he only bottles his wines when he is completely happy with them, so it is the rare vintage when all seven Barolos are released. A luxury Barbera from the Pozzo vineyard in the Annunziata district of La Morra made with the same rigorous low yields as the Barolos and a more affordable set of wines including a Dolcetto, Barbera and Langhe Nebbiolo round out the range. Though often lumped in with the modern school in Barolo, Voerzio takes his greatest inspiration from the masters of the traditional school, including Bruno Giacosa, Giovanni Conterno and Beppe Rinaldi, all men he still speaks about with the highest respect and admiration.

Voerzio is best known for fanatically low yields, which clearly inform his Barolos and is a major reason his early vintages remain fresh and intact to this day, a quality shared by many of his wines from lesser vintages as well.  Twenty years ago the idea of green harvesting was still radical in Piedmont, a poor, agrarian region where cutting off bunches of grapes was seen as the equivalent of throwing money away. Voerzio was convinced otherwise and followed his instincts by pursuing a radical approach to low yields. Voerzio cuts entire bunches off his plants, to the point the rows between his vineyards are literally strewn with fruit. Bunches that remain are meticulously trimmed, particularly towards the bottom and the sides of the bunch, where the harsher tannins are believed to lie. The typical triangular Nebbiolo bunch is transformed into a small, roundish shape, and yields are brought down to level previously never seen in Piedmont.

Roberto Voerzio, a Monument to Individuality
(by Burt Anderson)
When Roberto Voerzio founded his own winery at La Morra in 1986, the winemakers of Barolo were engaged in what was often depicted as a conflict between traditionalists and progressives, advocates of the old school and the new. But Roberto, raised in a family of vignaioli, was too busy with his vines and wines to takes sides, following instead his sense of individuality to employ practices and techniques that drew from the best of both schools.

Roberto has been going his own way since, gradually acquiring plots for Barolo, Barbera and Dolcetto on steep slopes of the Langhe hills and cultivating them with the rigorous respect for nature that defines his concept of winemaking. His 20 hectares of vineyards include sites that were long noted for outstanding Barolo, such as Brunate and Cerequio, plus a number of lesser known plots that he’s personally elevated to levels that on the other side of the Alps would be recognized as grands crus.

As Roberto puts it, there are no secrets to his success, no magic touches, just hard work and perseverance in cultivating vines with a resolve that might be considered fanatical were it not for his perennially youthful humor and easygoing manner. In vineyards for Barolo, at a density of 6,000 to 8,000 plants per hectare, Roberto harvests 500 to 700 grams of grapes per vine, among the lowest yields anywhere, for wines of extraordinary stature and personality.
Vineyards are tended without the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides or other products that interfere with the normal vegetative cycle. He ferments his wines with natural yeasts and, after spontaneous malolactic fermentation, matures them in oak barrels before being bottled without filtering. Yet Roberto refuses to label his wines as biological or biodynamic, pointing out, in his wry way, that all honest producers ought to respect nature without making an issue of it.
Voerzio has built the reputations for Barolo from La Serra, Sarmassa and Rocche dell’Annunziata Torriglione, while adding luster to Cerequio and Brunate. His Barolo Riserva Vecchie Viti dei Capalot e delle Brunate is bottled only in magnums and released ten years after the harvest-as are selections of other Barolos from top vintages.

Roberto also produces fine Dolcetto d’Alba Priavino and Barbera d’Alba Cerreto. But perhaps the wine he most likes to drink is Barbera Vigneto Pozzo dell’Annunziata. He bottles it in magnums priced like top Barolos, because, he admits, “I’m in no rush to sell it. To tell the truth, I’m hoping that for once I’ll have a few bottles left to enjoy in my old age.”
Each of Voerzio’s wines carries a distinct label illustrated with cartoon-like caricatures of people in vineyards in vivid pastels that seem to mock the conventional sobriety of so many wine labels. Hallmarks of the individuality that sets Roberto Voerzio so spiritedly apart from his peers.



Wine Vint. Type WA WS Avail Unit Price/Unit
Wine Barbera d'Alba Doc Riserva Pozzo dell'Annunziata Vint. 2000 Type Red WA 94 WS 92 Avail 2 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 245.90 BUY INFO
Wine Barbera d'Alba Doc Pozzo dell'Annunziata Vint. 2005 Type Red WA 94 WS 95 Avail 2 Unit owc 1.5ltx1 Price/Unit € 237.70 BUY INFO
Wine Barbera d'Alba Doc Riserva Pozzo dell'Annunziata Vint. 2011 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 3 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 200.82 BUY INFO
Wine Barbera d'Alba Doc Riserva Pozzo dell'Annunziata Vint. 2012 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 3 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 204.92 BUY INFO
Wine Barbera d'Alba Doc Il Cerreto Vint. 2013 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 6 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit € 22.95 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg La Serra (rare) Vint. 1984 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 1 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 491.80 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Fossati Case Nere Riserva Vint. 2003 Type Red WA 95 WS - Avail 1 Unit owc 3ltx1 Price/Unit € 1721.31 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Fossati Case Nere Riserva Vint. 2004 Type Red WA 97 WS - Avail 4 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit € 225.41 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Riserva Fossati Case Nere Vint. 2004 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 5 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit € 220.00 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Riserva vecchie Viti dei Capalot e dell Vint. 2009 Type Red WA 96+ WS - Avail 3 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 319.67 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Sarmassa Vint. 2009 Type Red WA 95 WS 91 Avail 3 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 286.89 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Torriglione Vint. 2010 Type Red WA 96 WS 94 Avail 2 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 307.38 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Brunate Vint. 2011 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 2 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit € 188.52 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg La Serra Vint. 2011 Type Red WA - WS 92 Avail 11 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit 176.23
- 10 %
€ 158.61
BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Rocche dell'Annunziata Vint. 2011 Type Red WA - WS 92 Avail 5 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit € 176.23 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Sarmassa Vint. 2011 Type Red WA - WS 92 Avail 5 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 311.48 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Torriglione Vint. 2011 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 6 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 340.16 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Cerequio Vint. 2012 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 8 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit € 180.33 BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Rocche dell'Annunziata Vint. 2012 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 9 Unit 0.75lt Price/Unit 180.33
- 10 %
€ 162.30
BUY INFO
Wine Barolo Docg Sarmassa Vint. 2012 Type Red WA - WS - Avail 2 Unit 1.5lt Price/Unit € 340.16 BUY INFO
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