Pronounced bar-BEHR-uh. A grape varietal, used in the production red wine, originating in the Piedmont Region of Italy. The grape is also grown in the United States (CA), South America, and Yugoslavia. The Barbera varietal is vinified as a 100% varietal and used as a blending agent to produce Barbera d'Asti, Barbera di Monferato, and Barbera di Alba wines. The Barbera is traditionally blended with the Dolcetto grape varietal. It is also used in the production of full, dry rosé's and, in California, to provide the backbone of jug wines.
Characteristics: Hearty, full-bodied, intense red wine. Wines produced with the Barbera varietal tend to be dry, high in alcohol and acidity, low in tannins. Flavors of ripe currant, blackberry, cherry, spice, chocolate, and nuance of smoke. Barbera d' Asti, with a refreshing taste of sour cherry, is the lightest version of the Barbera grape varietal
Ageing: Can be drunk young, although aging can further develop substance. A maximum of 6 to 7 years of oak ageing is recommended.
Serving temperature: Serve at a temperature of 60.8º-64.4º F.
Food pairings: Beef shish kabobs, cornish game hens, duck with rich sauce, confit duck, turkey with rich sauce, lamb, pork, veal chops, pasta with meat sauce, and hard cheeses.