Nebbiolo Grape Variety
Nebbiolo is a red wine grape famous for the production of Barolo and Barbaresco wines in the Piemonte wine region of Italy. A difficult grape to cultivate it requires sheltered south-facing sites and performs best to the north and south of Alba in the DOCG zones of Barbaresco and Barolo.
Langhe Nebbiolo is effectively the ‘second wine’ of Piedmont’s great Barolo & Barbarescos. This DOC is the only way Langhe producers can declassify their Barolo or Barbaresco fruit or wines to make an early-drinking style. Unlike Nebbiolo d’Alba, Langhe Nebbiolo can have up to 15% other red indigenous varieties, such as Barbera or Dolcetto in the blend.
Nebbiolo flowers early and ripens late, so has a long hang time, producing high levels of sugar, acidity and tannins; the challenge for winemakers being to harvest the fruit with these three elements ripe and in balance. The best Barolos and Barbarescos are perfumed with aromas of tar, rose, mint, chocolate, liquorice and truffles. They age brilliantly and the very best need ten years to show at their best.