Sometimes less is more: 1996 La Ca’ Növa Barbaresco

Above: Sometimes less is more. The thing I liked the most about this well-priced wine was how straightforward and earnest it was. Photo by The Brad’s Adventures in Food.

When 1996 Langa wines first arrived in this country, the vintage was touted as one of the greatest in living memory. And indeed, it was a fantastic vintage. The wines have many, many more years of vibrant life ahead of them but I’ve also been surprised by how well some of the 96s are drinking this year.

I don’t know how the above bottle found its way into The Italian Wine Guy’s cellar, but I was psyched that he wanted to pop it last night at dinner in Dallas. I really can’t find much information on La Ca’ Növa winery but I can say that I really liked the wine. It was straightforward and earnest in the glass, not a super star, just a hard-worker who wanted to deliver an honest wine. It was all about mushroom and dirt. There doesn’t seem to be any 96 left on the market (or at least on WineSearcher) but the available bottlings of classic Barbaresco seem to weigh in under $40. Sometimes less is more…

In other news…

It’s been a year since I arrived permanently in Texas (after driving across country in the ol’ Volvo). It’s been such a wonderful and wonderfully crazy time and Tracie B and I have been having so much fun planning our wedding. We have so much to be thankful for. The love and support of both our families, our health, and a bright future together. I’ve made so many great friends here and we’ve been having a blast celebrating the holidays with friends and family, old and new. Thanks, everyone, for reading and for all the support over this last year and beyond. I really can’t tell you just how much it means to me… it means the world… :-)

@Tracie B I love you and I never knew I could find such happiness and such goodness within and all around me. I’m so glad for a lovely lady from a small town in East Texas, with an “appetite and a dream…” :-)

I’ll never forget the first time I read that tag line on your blog and I’m so happy that I did… it changed my life forever and in ways I could have never imagined… I love you…

Photo by The Nichols.

8 thoughts on “Sometimes less is more: 1996 La Ca’ Növa Barbaresco

  1. Solid in every way…

    Good Luck, Best Wishes and Happy Holidays to you and Tracie… I hope that we may all be able to get together (with my better half and saving grace, Stephanie) in the very near future…


  2. Jeremy! A year since you became a Texan. That’s wild. But for an excellent reason.
    Now about Ca N’ova. I met them through Elena in 2000. Was absolutely charmed. Visited the domaine in 2002. Got them an importer they couldnt handle. THey are still as old-timey as that 1996 (and you had the domaine, there’s a Bric Menthe and a Montestefano). Organic, no yeasts, no new oak. Father son routine. Nice guys. Gorgeous wines that don’t get any play.

  3. La Ca Nova was a winery found by a friend ( and eventually a boss) of mine, Eugenio Spinozzi, who founded Tricana Imports with partner Sam Levitas. Eugenio passed away, but Sam is running the company in NY and the wines are still brought in by them. The winery is near the Montestefano area. They make a Bric Mentina and a Montestefano along with the Barbaresco DOCG. more info here:

    It is nice to know they pass the “Alice test”. I love these wines and the people and now one of the young sons is working to maintain the wines with the integrity that his dad and uncles and grandfather established it with.

    There’s a few more bottles in the magic closet, don’t worry

  4. @everyone thanks for the well wishes. all of your support, this year and beyond, has meant so much.

    @Alice how good is that wine???!!! I dig it! It’s so great to approach a wine like that with no preconception… Alfonso brought it along and I had no idea what to expect… and it just spoke for itself!

    @Alfonso man, thanks for turning me on!

    @The Brad great to meet you and hang… the first of many such evenings? I hope so…

    @Tracie B there ain’t nothing boring about Texas! :-) I’m so glad you brought me here… it was the smartest thing I ever did… I love you… I love you so much…

  5. Just like wish you and tracie b on your forth coming wedding, I have her blog in google reader..I have just read her post about the wonderful lady Lena who has designed your wedding invitations and how they met in Oxford in 1998.. I take it that it was oxford Uk…that is where I live, well just 12 miles out and go there a lot.

    Have a wonderful day, and lots of love in this marriage, You are both beautiful people…best wishes.Anne

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