Piemonte (Piedmont in English), in the foothills of the Alps in the north west of Italy, is home to the countries finest full-bodied red wines. Vineyards are planted high on steeply sloped ridges to catch maximum afternoon sunlight in this very cool, high altitude region.
The greatest wines of the region are made from the extremely long lived Nebbiolo, grown within the iconic appellations of Barolo and Barbaresco. Barbera however is the most widely planted and popular variety of the region, owing to its fruit-driven expressiveness and youthful approachability. Whilst the majority of the region’s vineyard owners still sell their fruit to large wineries and co-operatives, an increasing number are opting to make small amounts of wine themselves, selling directly under their own label such as Maretti.
Some of my favourite packaging here, just looks very sophisticated and so Italian. I think this is a blend of Barbera and Nebbiolo, perhaps some Dolcetto? Distinct earthy, almost peat character, along with spice, and cherries. It's medium bodied, earthy yet bright, with powdery tannin and a little tang to the acidity. There's, perhaps, a little liquorice in the mix too. Savoury complexity. It has a bit of charisma and flair, no doubt. A trip to Piedmont on a tight budget is made possible. Alcohol: 13.5%; Price: $23; Closure: Screwcap; Drink: 2018-2021+; Rated: 91 Points; Gary Walsh; The Wine Front
Deeply savoury and engaging, the bouquet shows dark fruit, smoked game, leather, dried herb and toasted almond characters. The palate is classically structured by chalky tannins, wonderfully complemented by succulent fruit flavours and spicy undertones. A sturdy, brooding red designed to partner rich meat dishes. Price: $30.00; Drink: Now-2021+; Rated: 91 Points; Sam Kim; Wine Orbit
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