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Elio Perrone Barbera d'Asti Tasmorcan 2012

Barbera from Asti, Piedmont, Italy
    0% ABV
    • WW89
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    • RP90
    • RP90
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    Winemaker Notes

    Elio Perrone Tasmorcan Barbera d'Asti is ruby red in color. It offers a delightful nose of red berries, cherries, violets and French oak. Medium in body with perfect acidity and soft tannins, it offers intense flavors of raspberries, cherries, vanilla and spice. This food-friendly red will drink well for 5-7 years. It is long, ripe and polished on the finish

    Critical Acclaim

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    Elio Perrone

    Elio Perrone

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    Elio Perrone, Asti, Piedmont, Italy
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    Working at a comparatively artisinal scale, Stefano Perrone has championed ideas foreign to most of the region's large producers. He works with many north-facing sites (for freshness), limits his yields, and makes a strict grape selection. Just as important is the aesthetic he brings to bear—seeking to make wines of deftness and levity; never big or "thick" Moscatos. Because of its delicacy and its dependence on perfect balance, great Moscato is hard to make, and only a few producers have mastered the craft. Among these few leaders, Stefano Perrone is quickly establishing himself as the reference-point producer.

    By the late '90s, Stefano was looking for new challenges. He recognized that the Asti zone possessed many old Barbera vineyards on steepslopes that would be planted to Nebbiolo if they were just a few miles west. He purchased the great Mongovone vineyard in 1999. With vines planted in 1932, Mongovone gave him the material to produce something special. Yet, just like with his Moscatos, Stefano produces Barbera that captures the ethereal freshness for which the Asti zone is noted. At the same time that he was branching out into Barbera, Stefano produced his first vintages of Bigaro—a softly sweet, gently effervescent salmon-colored sparkler made from Brachetto and Moscato.

    Best known for sweet, fizzy white wines but also producing some more serious reds, Asti is both a town and a province in the northeastern Italian region of Piedmont. The best vineyard sites are reserved for Barbera, which can produce some of its best and most age-worthy iterations here as Barbera d’Asti. Other red varieties grown here include Freisa, Grignolino, and Dolcetto, which can be bottled varietally or blended into Barbera.

    The wines consumers most commonly associate with Asti, however, are Asti (formerly known as Asti Spumante), and Moscato d’Asti. Both are playful, aromatic, and made from the Muscat grape, but Asti is less sweet, fully fizzy, and more alcoholic (yet still clocking in at only around 9% ABV) while Moscato d’Asti is sweeter, gently sparkling (“frizzante”), and closer to 5 or 6% ABV. Each is produced in stainless steel tanks to preserve the fresh and fruity flavors of the grape, which include peach, apricot, lychee, and rose petal.

    Friendly, approachable, and full of juicy fruit flavor, Barbera produces wines in a wide range of styles, from young and fruity to serious, spicy, and age-worthy. Piedmont is the most famous source of Barbera, but is also planted in the Italian provinces of Lombardy and Emilia-Romagna. It is one of the most successful and lasting remnants of the Cal-Italian movement, grown throughout the state of California—particularly in the Sierra Foothills—and has also found a foothold in parts of Australia.

    In the Glass

    Barbera is typically marked by red cherry, raspberry, and blackberry flavors backed by a signature zingy acidity and smooth tannins. More complex examples can include notes of cocoa, savory spice, anise, and nutmeg. In warmer New World climates, Barbera is all about the fruit, sometimes leaning towards over-ripe or dried fruit flavors that can give an impression of sweetness to the wine. Old World Barbera can develop intriguing notes of graphite, smoke, lavender, and violet.

    Perfect Pairings

    Barbera’s prominent acidity makes it a natural match with tomato-based dishes, therefore making 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 Secret

    Most Barbera wines come from one of two villages in Piemonte—Alba and Asti. Though it is difficult to generalize, typically Barbera d’Asti is softer and more elegant with bright, tangy acidity, while Barbera d’Alba tends to be fuller, rounder, and fleshier.

    PSLPE085_2012 Item# 128487