Robert Parker 90+ Points: "The NV Vermouth di Torino is based on Chardonnay but is infused and aromatized with cloves, cinnamon, quinine, citrus peel, ginger, nutmeg, marjoram and other secret ingredients that were written down on a piece of paper in 1952 and kept under lock and key ever since. The folks at Pio Cesare did well to bring this traditional recipe for Vermouth back into circulation. This is an ideal aperitivo drink that can be served on ice with a slice of lemon. It opens to a bright orange-gold color and offers a complicated bouquet that recalls the many aromatic ingredients used in the infusion. The fishing is sweet, but not excessively so.
You have to love the energy and dynamic thinking that comes out of this historic cellar located in the city center of Alba. Pio Cesare reflects the happy mood and the general euphoria coming out of Barolo and Barbaresco these past few years. The good spirits are linked to the ever-growing popularity of the region's excellent wines, winery owner Pio Boffa tells me with his daughter Federica (now working at the winery) and his nephew Cesare Benvenuto by his side. A wide smile spreads across his face. The Langhe is experiencing positive growth and this leads to creative thinking. For example, Pio Cesare has cleverly launched two new products born deep in the bowels of ancient tradition. They have launched a Vermouth and a Barolo Chinato, both based on grandma's secret recipe found stashed away for decades in a locked safe. These are two products that once enjoyed vibrant popularity here locally in the territory, but that have since faded from memory. Now, thanks to the global boom in mixed cocktails and spirits, the return of these products is appropriate and perfectly timed. I have reviewed both here, for fun. Besides the Vermouth and the Barolo Chinato, Pio Cesare boasts a line of eight table wines spread across an annual production of some 400,000 bottles. Besides the wines reviewed here, I had the opportunity to taste barrel samples from 2014, 2015 and 2016. I have sprinkled some of my impressions from this tasting in my comments on the upcoming vintages in this article introduction."