11 May 2023

Outsiders unencumbered by local politics, Lara Rocchetti and Luisa Sala (a.k.a. LaLu) are blurring Barolo’s outdated ‘modernist’ and ‘traditionalist’ generalisations with wines that take the best of both.

After graduating from the University of Pollenzo with a joint thesis on carbon-neutral wineries, Lara and Luisa spent harvests in Burgundy at Comtes Lafon and Cécile Tremblay, as well as Trediberri – one of Piedmont’s new benchmarks. They launched their own domaine in 2019.

Using scrupulous organic farming techniques, the pair tend 5ha of Nebbiolo, Barbera, and Dolcetto, including parcels in Monforte and La Morra – two of Barolo’s finest crus. Adopting Lalou Bize-Leroy’s skilful technique of partial destemming, Lara and Luisa use 50% whole-cluster fermentations to craft open and inviting wines without foregoing complexity.

LaLu’s Dolcetto is floral and fruit-driven with zesty acidity, while their Barbera brims with energy, its sappy fruit threaded with herbal nuances. Sourced from declassified Barolo vines, their Langhe Nebbiolo is vinified in concrete and aged in oak, offering a gorgeous perfume of red cherries and dried roses. A blend of power and finesse, LaLu’s Barolo ‘Le Coste de Monforte d’Alba’ combines sumptuous sour cherry and spice flavours built around a structure for long ageing.

In a region where land prices have skyrocketed and competition for allocations is at an all-time high, it is exciting to see new artisanal talent such as LaLu excel in value and drinkability.

Dolcetto d’Alba 2021 (£32) Sold out
Bright and enticing, with dark berries, forest floor, and wild flowers

Barbera d’Alba 2021 (£34) Sold out
Perfumed with plums and violets, its gentle richness cut with freshness and energy

Langhe Nebbiolo 2021 (£37) Sold out
Silky red cherries, dried roses, anise, and herbs framed by tension and clarity

Barolo ‘Le Coste di Monforte’ 2019 (£93/£190) Sold out
Layered with spicy fruit and dried petals, showing the hallmarks of the stellar 2019 vintage

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