This Week’s Wine Wisdom
Barolo is a section of Piedmont, Italy, southwest of Alba. While wine in Italy is timeless, Barolo came about in the 1800s when the Marchesa Giulietta Colbert Falletti started making wine out of Nebbiolo grapes. Nowadays, there are 3,000 acres of Nebbiolo producers in the towns of Barolo, Castiglione Falletto, Cherasco, Diano d’Alba, Grinzane Cavour, La Morra, Monforte d’Alba, Novello, Roddi, and Serralunga d’Alba.
The standard grape used in Barolo is still nebbiolo. Of the towns in the area, the “left” hills have compact soil and produce long lasting wines. The “right” hills have softer soil, making a wine that should be drunk more quickly. Both vineyards are regulated – Barolo vineyards can only grow around 3200k of grape/acre.
The Piedmont area of Italy in general is ripe with history – ancient castles, legends of feuds and loves, beautiful hills and valleys. This is a great area to go both wine touring and vacationing.
Barolo alcoholic content is set at 13%. There are two grades of Barolo:
- Standard Barolo, aged two years in the barrel, one in the bottle.
- Riserva Barolo, aged three years in the barrel, one in the bottle.
Barolo wines are typically a deep red. Their flavor is thick and complex. Some are flowery – violets, roses. Others are fruit, licorice, or oaky. Barolo should be drunk at 60F and can age for 5-10 years.