92 points Vinous
"The 2018 Pinot Nero from Abbazia di Novacella is dark and a bit restrained, requiring some time to open up in the glass. The bouquet slowly blossoms to reveal dusty black cherry, offset by hints of sweet mint, sage, and stone dust. Its ripe red fruits are strewn with a complex mix of minerals and savory spice, as grippy tannins build toward the finale. There’s really so much to like here, delivering both a fresh and juicy expression now, but also with the primary fruit and structure to evolve beautifully in the cellar for a number of years. This Pinot Nero goes through malolactic fermentation and spends sixty days in 60 hectoliter oak casks before bottling, creating a pleasurable and perfectly balanced expression. Drinking window: 2020 - 2028"
Vinous Reverie Notes
Located in the sleepy little burg of Novacella, in the Isarco River Valley, Abbazia was founded in 1142 by the Augustinian Order of Canons Regular. The Augustians are not monks in the sense that you may be familiar with: they have taken vows of poverty, chastity and obedience to their superiors; but they also work to support themselves as a part of their community. To this end, the Abbey not only grows grapes for winemaking, but also farms apples and vegetables, and there is a small school devoted primarily to studies of viticulture. The abbey’s reputation as a winery is stellar and international. In 2009, Italy’s influential Gambero Rosso named Celestino Lucin, the abbey’s enologist, Winemaker of the Year. And this aromatic Pinot Nero is one of the best that Italy has to offer.