Learn about Barbera — taste profile, popular regions and more ...
Friendly, approachable and full of juicy red fruit, Barbera produces wines in a wide range of styles, from youthful, fresh and fruity to serious, structured and age-worthy. Piedmont is the most famous source of Barbera, but it is also planted in a few nearby Italian provinces and remains one of the most widely planted varieties in the country. Barbera actually can adapt to many climates and enjoys success in California—particularly in the Sierra Foothills—and some southern hemisphere wine regions.
Tasting Notes for Barbera
Barbera is a dry, red wine typically marked by flavors of red cherry, raspberry or blackberry. Warmer sites produce Barberas with intensely ripe fruit and complex notes of cocoa, savory spice, anise and nutmeg. Cooler sites will produce a lighter Barbera with more finesse and intriguing notes of cranberry, graphite, smoke, lavender and violet.
Perfect Food Pairings for Barbera
Barbera’s prominent acidity makes it a natural match with tomato-based dishes, so it an easy pairing with a wide array of Italian cuisine. It works just as well with lighter red meat dishes, hamburgers or barbecue.
Sommelier Secrets for Barbera
In the past it wasn’t common or even accepted to age Barbera in oak but today both styles—oaked and unoaked—abound, at least in Piedmont. In fact, many Piedmontese producers today still make a deliciously pure, fruity and unoaked version, intended for earlier consumption. The wine world didn't realize Barbera's potential until Giacomo Bologna's debut of the barrique-aged Barbera called Bricco dell’Uccellone in Asti in the 1960s. Many of the better bottlings of Piemontese Barbera can age gracefully for 10-15 years or more.
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Castello del Terriccio Lupicaia 2006Barbera from Tuscany, Italy
Beni di Batasiolo Barbera d'Alba Sovrana 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Vietti Barbera d'Alba Tre Vigne 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Coppo Camp du Rouss Barbera d'Asti 2006Barbera from Asti, Piedmont, Italy
La Spinetta Barbera d'Asti Ca Di Pian (375ML half-bottle) 2006Barbera from Asti, Piedmont, Italy
Marchesi di Barolo Maraia Barbera di Monferrato 2006Barbera from Piedmont, Italy
Pio Cesare Fides Barbera d'Alba 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Jacuzzi Barbera 2006Barbera from Carneros, California
Shannon Ridge Barbera 2006Barbera from North Coast, California
Beni di Batasiolo Barbera d'Alba 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Boroli Quattro Fratelli Barbera d'Alba 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Azienda Agricola Trinchero Barbera d'Asti Vigna del Noce 2006Barbera from Asti, Piedmont, Italy
Parusso Barbera d'Alba Superiore 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Scott Harvey Mountain Selection Barbera 2006Barbera from Amador, Sierra Foothills, California
Vietti Barbera d'Alba Scarrone Vigna Vecchia 2006Barbera from Alba, Piedmont, Italy
Viticoltori Associati di Vinchio-Vaglio Barbera d'Asti Sei Vigne Insynthesis Superiore 2006Barbera from Asti, Piedmont, Italy