Barbera de Monferrato 'Rossore', Cantina Iuli, Piedmont 2014

'Rossore' Barbera de Monferrato, Cantina Iuli, Piedmont 2012.jpg
'Rossore' Barbera de Monferrato, Cantina Iuli, Piedmont 2012.jpg

Barbera de Monferrato 'Rossore', Cantina Iuli, Piedmont 2014


Barbera is a grape variety with an identity crisis. It comes in so many different guises, from the light and distinctly tart to the impenetrably dark and brooding, that it makes you ask "Will the real Barbera please stand up!" It's such a shame, because it's a beautiful variety when left unadorned. We felt compelled to write a song to its charms:

You're insecure,
Don't know what for,
You're turning heads every time that you pour,
Don't need make-up, to cover up,
Being the way that you are is enough.
Everyone else in the room can see it,
Everyone else but you.
Baby you light up my world like nobody else,
The way you perfume the air gets me overwhelmed,
But when you hide in your shell it ain't hard to tell,
You don't know, oh oh,
You don't know you're beautiful.

It'll never catch on, but we hope it might make Barbera realise what natural beauty it has. This example, from Cantina Iuli in Montaldo di Cerrina shows Barbera without any cosmetics, it's stripped back and incredibly pure and clean and elegant, allowing the cherry and red flower aromas to emerge freely from the glass. The palate is wonderfully juicy, thanks to the succulent fruit and Barbera's natural acidity and the hands-off wine-making (organic, no chemical additions, low sulphur), which allows the grape to express itself without the meddling influence of toasty of oak flavours. If you like pure, juicy, unaffected wines with a real Italian heart, then you will love this. 13.5% alc. Drink now-2020.

Press review:

Jancis Robinson MW: "Full of ripe fruit and then really appetising acidity. Very Piemontese. To be drunk with food. Soon." 16 points

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