Winegrowing Regions of the Barbera Varietal
Today the Barbera grape can be found all over the world. Italian emigrants brought specimins of the Barbera vine to California, where this red wine has become extremely popular and is thus grown in large quantity. Outside Italy, the Barbera varietal is also grown for wine production in Argentina, Australia, Greece, Isreal, South Africa, Sovenia and many other countries.
The Barbera grape produces a full-bodied red wine with a characteristic deep red colour, a low tannin content and distinctive plum notes.
Barbera Wines - High-Yield Vines
Barbera is a high-yield varietal, a fact which almost led to its undoing during the Italian wine-boom in the 1970s. The Barbera grape began to be used for the mass production of cheap, low-quality wines, some of which – in conjunction with the methanol scandal in the mid-1980s – were discovered to have been adulterated with wood alcohol. The decrease in quality and dumping prices harmed the reputation of Barbera wines so much that they became almost unsaleable.
Barbera – High-Quality Varietal Wines
Since then, Italy has been placing great emphasis on prudent amounts and the conscientious care of the Barbera vines. Today, for example, the Piemont – the winegrowing region in which the Barbera is still the most widely grown varietal – produces many valuable wines, such as the famous Barbera d'Alba and Barbera d'Asti. High-quality Barbera varietal wines are also produced in Emilia-Romagna und Lombardy. In other Italian winegrowing regions, Barbera is mainly used for the production of table wines and in wine blends or cuvées.