Piedmont, Italy

Alteni di Brassica DOP — 2020

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  • Introduction

    • The Winery: Located in Piedmont in northwestern Italy, the GAJA winery is widely considered to be one of the greatest estates in the world, producing coveted and collectible labels.

      The Wine: The name originates from Alteni, small stone walls that once surrounded the plots of land, and the word Brassica, yellow flowers growing in the vineyards in spring.

  • Vineyard Profile

    • Vineyards: Alteni di Brassica is produced from vineyards located in Barbaresco and Serralunga. Covering approximately 3 hectares (7.5 acres) with a mainly calcareous clay soil.
    • Appellation: Langhe D.O.P.
    • Location: Piedmont
    • Cultivation: Sustainable
    • First Year of Production: 1986
  • Vintage Report

    • The 2020 vintage produced polished white wines with a surprising bouquet and great freshness.

      2020 was characterized by frequent rainfall, atypical for several reasons. Overall precipitation was above average (the total annual average was 1000 mm in the Barolo area and 900 mm in the Barbaresco area, compared to the usual 800 mm). Rainfall was concentrated in the summer months rather than in winter and spring. Surprisingly, despite the frequent summer thunderstorms, for the first time in many years, none of our vineyards were damaged by hail. Most of the winter rains fell in November (there was also an early snowfall on November 15th), helping to offset the drought from December through March. Winter temperatures were mild, with January 2020 going down in history as the warmest winter recorded in the last 50 years. The real cold, with temperatures below freezing, came in mid-March and lasted for a month, but there was no frost damage. The period from May to early October was characterized by an alternation of warm days, and thunderstorms, followed by cooler days with the only exceptions of heat spikes in late May, one in August, and one in mid-September. The heat in mid-August helped with the grape maturation, color, aromas, and overall health of the grapes. The harvest of the white grapes started on August 26 was longer than usual due to some rainfall that prolonged the final ripeness of each vineyard.

  • Vinification

    • Aging: Aging in oak for six-eight months
  • Technical Information

    • Varietal Composition: 100% Sauvignon Blanc
    • Alcohol: 13.5%
  • Tasting Notes

    • Intense color with green hues. On the nose, it shows notes of papaya, peach, sage, mint, tomato confit, limestone, and flint with a fresh lime finish. In the mouth, it is round, soft, and creamy with a long, savory finish and good acidity. The notes of lime and limestone also linger in the mouth.



  • Alteni di Brassica DOP — 2020 – Wine Advocate – 94+ Points

    “Shows tropical tones and sweet peach. It feels large and generous to the palate. Pretty mineral tones, even a hint of white pepper, add focus. The wine is not all nerves; there is creamy richness here.”

  • Alteni di Brassica DOP — 2021 – Jeb Dunnuck – 91 Points

    “This was also tasted from barrel and takes on more intensity in its aromatics of guava, grapefruit, and wet stone. Medium-bodied, with some salinity, this is an accessible wine for those who would like an introduction into the white wines of the Gaja estate. It has a linear feel, with rounded fruit on the mid-palate and a fresh spine of acidity.”