Wine Grapes: Barbera


Pronunciation: bar-BEAR-ah

Planted in: Italy, California, Argentina, Australia, South Africa, Slovenia, Greece, and Israel

Barbera is widely cultivated mainly in Piemonte and in the southern part of Italy. This deep ruby-colored grape has a very high acidity that is still very distinct even on its full ripeness and produces dark red fruit flavors. It is the third most planted variety in Italy following Montepulciano and Sangiovese.

The origins of this variety are still unknown however there are a couple of hypotheses on how and where it started. Records show that It was only towards the end of the 18th century where Conte Nuovolone Pergamo mentioned the variety. It is also uncertain that Piedmonte, where Barbera is widely popular today, is the place of origin of the grape as there is no concrete evidence nor records.  In addition, DNA profiling showed that the other grapes in Piemonte have a little similarity to Barbera hence, the conclusion of the origin might be elsewhere.

Source: Wine Grapes 
A complete guide to 1,368 vine varieties, including their origins and flavors
Jancis Robinson, Julia Harding, and Jose Vouillamouz
Published by the Penguin Group

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