Wine of the week: a dark-hued, spicy, berry-stuffed beauty

The balance of fruit and acidity is pinpoint accurate in this Italian red that's perfect for drinking now.

2018 Dolcetto d’Alba, Massolino, Piemonte, Italy


I am currently putting the finishing touches to my 2020 Piemonte Report and although this huge body of tasting notes focuses on the nebbiolo grape, most notably featuring the greatest barolos and barbarescos in this epic region, I have also included a handful of elite barberas and dolcetto, from the top estates, too.I adore the dolcetto grape – if Piemontese nebbiolo is as sensual and regal as the finest Burgundian pinot noir, then dolcetto has the immediate-drinking, cheerful and uplifting attitude of Beaujolais!

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Franco Massolino presides over one of the superstar wineries in the region and he makes a densely fruited dolcetto from his vineyards in Serralunga d’Alba. He recalls, “My grandfather had a glass of dolcetto with every meal. He loved its drinkability and regarded it as the perfect match for the food of the Langhe.” Massolino Senior was spot on and this wine is the finest vintage that I have tasted from this incredible winery to date.

In order to underline its sublime class, I can assure you that it is already drinking perfectly, as the balance of fruit and acidity is pinpoint accurate. All this wine needs is a quick swirl around a decanter and this dark-hued, spicy, berry-stuffed, glamorous beauty is ready to go.

All you need to do now is knock up a plate of Tajarin al ragù di salsiccia and you will be in food and wine heaven, otherwise known as Piemonte!

• Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (

Matthew Jukes

Matthew Jukes has worked in the UK wine business for well over three decades and during this time has written 14 wine books.  

Matthew regularly lectures, judges, speaks at wine conferences and runs masterclass tastings for both corporate and private clients all over the world. Matthew is also the creator of his ground-breaking initiative, the One Day Wine School, an indulgent day of tasting and learning first performed in 2006.

He has been the MoneyWeek wine correspondent since 2006 and has written a weekly column for the Daily Mail’s Weekend Magazine since 1999. His four highly-acclaimed, annual wine reports – the Burgundy En Primeur Report, the Bordeaux En Primeur Report, the Piemonte Report and the 100 Best Australian Wines – are published on his website,

Matthew is one of the world’s leading experts on Australian wine and, with Brisbane-based wine writer Tyson Stelzer, runs an annual competition in Australia to find ‘The Great Australian Red’.  He was made Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK at the 2012 Australia Day Foundation Gala dinner. 

Matthew is a winner of the International Wine and Spirit Competition's Communicator of the Year Trophy.  His thoughts, recommendations and tastings notes are followed very closely by the wine world at large.