100% Barbera. We pressed off 20% of the juice pressed for rosé, creating more concentration in the resulting red wine, and did an extended fermentation of 21 days for a deeper extraction. This wine aged in 50% new American oak and 50% neutral oak for 15 months in barrel.
This deep-garnet hued Barbera boasts a bright and expressive nose of red and purple fruits including blackberry, cherry, and plum against a backdrop of violets, leather, and tobacco. On the palate, you’ll notice it is more acid-driven than many other red wines. Barbera is known for this, and it makes it a great food-pairing wine. We noted flavors of dried berries and plum, with a medium-body and medium intensity finish.
Food pairings that contrast Barbera’s acidity work well. Think rich, dark meats, mushrooms, blue cheese, herbaceous cheeses, and higher tannin foods like root vegetables & braised greens. Complementary pairings like pasta with red sauce also work quite well.
Barbera is best known from the Northwestern Italian region of Piedmont, where it is planted heavily in Alba and Asti. It is often planted on lower slopes in the hilly region, while Nebbiolo, a more finicky grape, is planted on higher slopes. Here in the Sierra Foothills, a similarly hilly region, we’ve discovered that this variety thrives.
Barbera is considered a “wine of the people” in Italy and is typically enjoyed fairly young. Though it can certainly age for a number of years without fading, it lacks the heavily tannic structure that would allow it to age for longer, as Nebbiolo does.