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Barbera is often considered an afterthought to Nebbiolo in the grand scheme of Piemonte’s wines, but the hierarchy is a bit different in the Monferrato. In this sunny region east of Alba, Barbera is king, and growers like Pietro Arditi of Cantine Valpane take the grape very seriously. His Perlydia is aged in concrete tanks for several years before bottling, so you know it is ready to drink upon release. While it can age for a few more years, its rich, juicy fruit and plump texture make it hard to resist today, especially when served with tomato-based pastas, pizza, or even a burger. Pietro and his family love to cook, and the wine truly shines with Piemontese specialties, which often consist of egg noodles covered with meaty ragù or aged cheeses like the local castelmagno. Valpane’s wines also represent tremendous values—you won’t find bargains like this in Barolo!
|Appellation:||Barbera del Monferrato|
|Vineyard:||Planted in 2000, 15. ha|
|Aging:||Aged 2-5 years in stainless steel and cement tanks before bottling, aged one year in bottle before release|
When buying red Burgundy, I think we should remember:
1. Big wines do not age better than light wine.
2. A so-called great vintage at the outset does not guarantee a great vintage for the duration.
3. A so-called off vintage at the outset does not mean the wines do not have a brilliant future ahead of them.
4. Red Burgundy should not taste like Guigal Côte-Rôtie, even if most wine writers wish it would.
5. Don’t follow leaders; watch yer parking meters.
Inspiring Thirst, page 174