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  • Writer's pictureJohn Paul Kaminga

Looking Forward: Le Piane Boca 2016

Some of Le Piane's organic vineyards, high in the hills of Boca

We talk about Le Piane often. New arrivals from this winery are quite simply exciting, and a new vintage of their flagship Boca is a source of genuine anticipation at Craft and Cru. The 2016 Boca will arrive early September, and we have no doubt that it will be a wine to lay down next to the most collectible red wines of Piemonte, wines that are getting harder to find and ever more expensive. To have access to a wine like Le Piane Boca 2016 is truly an opportunity.

There has been a frenzy of interest in the 2016 vintage of Piemonte, particularly, of course, in the wines of Barolo and Barbaresco, but it was also a great vintage for Boca. A very ripe year but not especially hot, Nebbiolo grapes were able to hang long before the 2016 harvest began, developing complex savory flavors. The harvest at Le Piane started October 15 and lasted until October 25. The greatest 2016s of Barolo and Barbaresco are easily 14% abv, while the 2016 Le Piane Boca will be a powerful and dense beauty at only 13.21% abv. We love Barolo and Barbaresco, but getting serious Nebbiolo at lower alcohol levels is one of the most compelling aspects of fine Alto Piemonte wines like Le Piane's Boca. Can't wait to try this in a few weeks, a few years... a few decades!

Le Piane Boca DOC 2016 - $70

As always, a blend of 85% Nebbiolo and 15% Vespolina from carefully tended organically cultivated vines growing on some of the most historically important vineyard land in Italy.

Order a bottle of 2016 Boca before it arrives and we'll knock 10% off. Order three or more bottles and we'll knock 15% off. Please email to place your orders or inquiries.

...keep scrolling to find a picture of the dear Christoph Künzli, as well as some material we've previously presented...


Le Piane is one of Italy's undiscovered jewels... one of the leading estates in Piedmont.

-Antonio Galloni, Vinous Media

Christoph Künzli is a man of infectious charisma and joyful optimism. He also produces some of the finest wines you will find in Alto Piemonte. This high-performing winery is a true treasure not only for Piedmont but for Italian wine in general.

-Monica Larner, Wine Advocate

I have nothing but admiration for what owner Christoph Kunzli has managed to do at his very fine Boca estate of Le Piane.

-Ian D'Agata

Boca is full of promise. An ancestral home to the great Nebbiolo grape, the Boca region was once a revered source of wine, much celebrated across Italy. At its height, Boca was planted to thousands of hectares of vineyards, but by the end of the last century it was almost completely abandoned, with less than 10 hectares in production. Christoph Künzli, a Swiss wine merchant, having met and befriended Antonio Cerri, one of the very last people to keep Boca fruiting through the 20th century, saw enormous potential in the region. Tasting Cerri's wines, knowing the history of the region, seeing countless old terraces on overgrown hillsides, Christophe became determined to bring Boca back to glory. Upon Cerri's death in 1997, at 84 years of age, Christoph, with investors, bought his farm, and subsequently several choice vineyard sites in and around the Boca DOC. The new estate was named Le Piane.

Since the beginning, Christoph has sought to push the quality envelope, and excitement for his project has been real. In recent years, the team at Le Piane has really hit its stride and the wines go from strength to strength. If Le Piane was in Barolo or Barbaresco, the wines would be much more difficult to acquire (and perhaps much more expensive) but Boca flies so low that even its best wines are not hard to find on release. We always stock wines from Le Piane in stock, and we can confidently say that they are not only the best of Boca, but among the best of Piedmont. A fine vintage of Le Piane Boca stands shoulder to shoulder with any great Italian red wine.

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