Ciao amici,

Went home last month to visit my family in Joisey and cracked a few Baroli from my stash in my sister's cellar.

1. 1974 Borgogno, Barolo "Historico". This was a gift to me recently from a private cellar. Totally oxidized and undrinkable.

2. 1996 Aldo Conterno, Barolo, Vigna Colonello. From my stash, don't remember how this came to me or what was paid at the time. On paper it should have been superb. Reality: totally oxidized and undrinkable.

3. 1990 Vietti, Barolo "Rocche". From my stash, 29 years old and showing every year, it was also quite oxidized, but did, amazingly show some improvement with an hour of air and at least was drinkable, but not good. Grade: just barely drinkable. Pushed too far?

4. 1996 Giacomo Fenocchio, Barolo "Cannubi". From my stash, Chris James brought me a six pack way back in the day, this is the last of the six. Still a good healthy color, pretty nose of black cherries and raspberries, some tobacco and smoke. Not as good as earlier bottle but still quite satisfying. Drink 'em if you got 'em. Grade: solid B/B+.

5. 1993 Oddero, Barolo normale. From my bil's stash, this was quite good! I love Oddero, and this simple "normale" was the best of the five Baroli. Still aromatic, lean and lithe, complex, smoky, tobacco and licorice to go with the black cherry/blackberry like fruit. Grade: B+.

6. 1990 Mastroberardino, Taurasi 'Radici". From my stash, I definitely waited too long on this, it was tired and showing some browning in the color and oxidation on the nose, but still tasty enough not to pour it down the sink. We drank the whole thing. Grade: B.

"When laws become the enemy of men, then men become the enemies of laws".