Gianfranco Alessandria (not to be confused with the Alessandrias of Verduno) is a tiny producer working entirely within San Giovanni, one of the hamlets of Monforte. He produces less than two hectares worth of Nebbiolo, so it is actually remarkable that any of his Barolo makes it to the United States.The wines are elegant, not super-structured blockbusters. They are raised in French oak, but the barrels are almost all used, so they do not provide oaky flavors but merely soften and round out the tannins. The wines end up beautifully smooth, silky and harmonious. They also end up tasting of La Morra, with its intense flavors of cherries and a hint of bittersweet chocolate mint.