Saturday, September 19, 2020

Variety of Barbera at Scagliola Sansi in Monferrato

I had been searching for a bottle of Barbera that I knew was in my cellar and just kept missing it somehow until I located it the other day.  I hadn’t loaded it into my inventory so I was unsure of the vintage, but I knew it was either past its peak or was getting close to it.  Even though this 2012 Barbera d’Asti from Scagliola Sensi had some age to it, I was pleasantly surprised by how well it had held up.  I was overdue for a wine from Piedmont and this was an enjoyable mid-week treat. 

The Grape ~ Barbera 

Barbera is a red grape that is the most widely planted throughout the Piedmont wine region.  Its native home is in the hills of Monferrato, in the northeastern part of Piedmont.  Barbera is a highly productive grape that is known for its deep color with high acidity and low tannin.  It had always been known for its approachable style and fresh red fruit, but producers have been using oak adding layers, structure and complexity to the wine resulting in a richer wine. 

The Appellation ~ Barbera d’Asti DOCG 

The Barbera d’Asti DOCG appellation was granted back in 2008.  It’s the second largest appellation in Piedmont when it comes to production levels.  Maybe a no brainer, but Asti is the core center of the appellation, hence the name.  With such a large territory, it’s important to do your research and understand how each individual winery is producing their wines to better understand the style depending upon what you’re looking for.   

Barbera d'Asti wine region of Piedmont
Copyright of Italian Wine Central
The Winery ~ Scagliola Sansi 

Scagliola Sansi is situated in the village of Calosso on top of the San Siro hill in Monferrato with almost 100 acres reaching about 1,050 to 1,250 feet above sea level.  The winery began back in 1936 by Camilla Scagliola whom unfortunately passed away at a young age leaving behind 5 children.  Thankfully his family followed in his footsteps and today the winery is run by the 4th generation with more to come.  

His son Giovanni at the young age of 14 began to rent land around the family’s home to plant vines, crops and raise livestock.  Cattle sales became a large part of how the family earned a living, but as Giovanni’s sons joined the business, they began selling their wine products on the market.    

The Wine 

2012 Scagliola Sensi “Frem” Barbera d’Asti DOCG – Frem in local dialect translates to firm and robust.  Frem was one of the first Barbera bottles the winery started with.  Although I couldn’t locate the aging process on this wine I can only assume from taste this wine has seen some oak.  This Barbera was deeply colored with purple hues.  It’s full-bodied, rich with bramble fruit and good acidity.  I couldn’t find the SRP on this vintage, but recent vintages were about $25-26.  

2012 Scagliola Sansi Frem Barbera d'Asti DOCG
What are some of your favorite Barbera producers?


*This wine was provided as a sample, but opinions are all my own. Imported by Vinilandia.

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