Gaja   Costa Russi

2009 Costa Russi

By Gaja

2009 Costa Russi by Gaja, Piedmont, Italy

Let us cast our minds back to the sumptuous autumnal days that graced the burgeoning vineyards of Piedmont in 2009—a challenging yet ultimately rewarding year. For there, grounded in Ligurian limestone and marne soils begins the tale of the 2009 Costa Russi from Gaja.


Vintage of character: 2009 Costa Russi

The vintage of 2009 offered an interesting dalliance for growers—cool weather set a slow pace for budding. Then, beguilingly, summer's ardour bathed the region, improving vine health and accelerating grape ripening. The culmination was a bidirectional dance between Nebbiolo's bold vigour and the minutely nuanced climate shifts. Attention, hereinafter, should be given to Gaja's astute interpretation of this most engaging vintage.

Echoing this breathtaking equilibrium between assertive power and elegant composure is the 2009 Costa Russi. Expect to taste a bouquet of ripe cherries and prunes peppered with hints of anise and leather, indicating its considerable aging potential—an important factor for fine wine investors.


Gaja's Magic in a Glass

The incomparable genius at Gaja becomes apparent when we delve deeper into this fascinating expression of Piedmont terroir. Unmistakably embodying the house's commitment to meticulous viticulture and innovative winemaking techniques; truly, a testament to their laudable precision.

Persistent yet never overbearing tannins provide an excellent structure for what can only be described as a symphony of ripe fruit and subtle earthy undertones. Underneath lies a delicate whisper telling tales of sun-baked stones and cooling alpine winds.

The journey of the 2009 Costa Russi from grape to glass is so exquisitely portrayed, it should be considered a must even for the most discerning of fine wines from Italy collectors.


Noble reflection of nobler tradition

Embodying decades of winemaking expertise, the 2009 Costa Russi emerges as one of Gaja’s most spellbinding creations. An enigmatic offering, encapsulating a memorable vintage in each meticulously crafted bottle.

Call it a hedonistic indulgence or an investment gem, this quintessential Italian red blend manifests the daring resilience of its vintage and honours the rich tapestry of Piedmont's wine narratives. A moving ode, indeed, to both Nebbiolo and Gaja's unwavering resilience. Do savour it—or better yet—add it to your precious fine wine investment portfolio.

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Scores and tasting notes


The overt fruit and depth typical of Costa Russi comes through in spades in the 2009. Plums, black cherries, chocolate and new leather form the core of this round, expressive Costa Russi. As beautiful as this is, the 2009 remains deeply marked by the vintage. There is plenty of beauty and richness in the glass, but not quite the sheer visceral thrill of the very best Costa Russis. Although I wouldn’t open any of the 2009 single-vineyard wines in the near-term, the Costa Russi is the most expressive of the three. Anticipated maturity: 2017-2029. Angelo Gaja doesn’t say too much about his wines these days. He doesn’t need to. The wines more than speak for themselves. What impresses me most about the 2009s is the elegance of their tannin. This is a vintage where managing the crop load was critical in achieving balance. Gaja is one of the very few growers who got it right. His wines stand out for their textural finesse and sense of harmony. Although Gaja is easily the most glamorous winery in Piedmont, it remains a family affair, with Angelo Gaja’s wife Lucia, and their daughters Gaia and Rossana increasingly involved, and their younger brother Giovanni set to follow in their footsteps. Long-time winemaker Guido Rivella keeps a much lower profile, but he is the man who has produced all of Gaja’s most legendary wines going back to 1970. Angelo Gaja describes 2009 as a year with a lot of rain until June. The bunches on average were loose and the berries small, which resulted in high skin-to-juice ratios, which is quite favorable for ageworthy wines. Importer: Terlato Wines International, Lake Bluff, IL; tel. (847) 604 8900

Antonio Galloni - The Wine Advocate, 30 October 2012

Vintage performance