Bruno Rocca

Bruno Rocca is a family-run wine estate located in the northwestern Barbaresco appellation of Piedmont region in Italy.

Rocca is an eminent producer of aromatic Barbaresco from the Nebbiolo varietal, a DOCG wine standing for “Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita”, the highest classification achievable in Italy.

The modern estate owned by Francesco Rocca began its activity in 1958 with grapes sold to the Barbaresco winery community until 1978. Further to the estate relocation to the prestigious area of Rabajà, Francesco Rocca, well aware of his legacy, began releasing the first wines under the family name, whose reputation gradually built up to international fame, resulting in the subsequent acquisition of new vineyards and land.

The estate spans an area of about 15 hectares encompassing 3.5 hectares of Rabajà, including varieties like Dolcetto, Chardonnay and Barbera, with the latter also being grown beyond the borders of Rocca’s original premises, namely over 2.9 hectare vineyards owned by the family in the Monferrato Astigiano area.

Currently, the estate’s management also includes two members from the latest generations: Bruno Rocca’s daughter and son – Luisa and Francesco – are responsible for the expanded production of Langhe, Nebbiolo, Dolcetto, Barbera d’Asti and Chardonnay.

Nebbiolo accounts for 80% of production of the estate, followed by Barbera, Dolcetto, Chardonnay and rare red blends making up 12%, 5%, 3% and 1% respectively of the 15 hectares acreage within Bruno Rocca’s estate.

The total production area spans over a surface of 682 hectares, producing over 5,000 tonnes of Nebbiolo grapes.

With regard to winemaking style, Bruno Rocca’s unmistakable modernist approach to wine is a combination of modern technology, Piemontese structure and skilful use of oak.

Harvest is performed by hand using small and open crates and only perfectly ripe grapes are selected. Further sorting is carried out by hand at the entrance to the cellar, in order to preserve both the stalks and the skins intact. Such accuracy allows for the must to remain unoxidised, hence preventing any addition of sulphur throughout this phase.

After being destemmed, Nebbiolo grapes are fermented in wooden vats, whereas stainless steel is preferred for other varieties. Vinification occurs on a singular basis for each vineyard, with grapes from large ones split among two or three vats, allowing for further differentiation.

Fermentation occurs with exclusively native yeasts throughout a medium-long time (also known as ‘ennobling extraction’) with nearly whole grapes and specific pump-overs (also called remontage in French). By doing so, the aim is to keep skins intact until the fermented wine is run off or pressed, therefore, allowing for the perfect amount of polyphenolic extraction.

The wine is now finally allowed to rest in wood – with a minimum age of 40 months, naturally dried to enhance flavour development. Ageing occurs in attentively selected French oak barriques and larger barrels called tonneaux in order to soften tannins, stabilise colour and convey an oaky vanilla-like flavour into the wine. This especially occurs when new oak is used in the process, which lasts for at least 26 months starting from the 1st of November of the year of harvest.

Drawing upon the über-famous Burgundian Pinot Noir, discovered during a trip well before he turned into a winemaker himself, Bruno Rocca has devoted his life to producing outstanding Nebbiolo grapes that grow on the estate’s tufaceous clay-rich and sandy soils. The vineyards face south-west and sit at an elevation of 300 metres above sea level. The vines owned by Bruno Rocca can be up to 60 years old.

Elegance, balance as well as structure are amongst the distinctive traits of Bruno Rocca’s wine range.

Barbaresco is the most notable wine produced at the estate. From Rabajà and Marcorino vineyards, Barbaresco presents firm structure and is mainly described as aromatic with balanced tannins. Currà and San Cristoforo vineyards, instead, yield a more delicate and refined class of Barbaresco, with great personality and harmonious tannins. Currà in particular is believed to be the feminine version of Rabajà.

Chardonnay from Bausoni vineyards presents complex yet harmonious structure with distinct tannins.

At last, Vaglio Serra Barbera d’Asti DOCG is known for its lively yet complex structure with fresh fruit and great ageing potential.

For you, The Beauty & The Taste has selected a 2008 Bruno Rocca Rabajà.