Why is this Wine so Yummy?
From the Winery:
“Aldo says that Barbera is the wine that is most like my character. A hint of curiosity and patience that sees it blossom to reveal itself in pure and rich personality.” Milena Vaira
DESCRIPTION: Our Barbera d’Alba comes from the wonderful range of Vajra estate vineyards. It is fermented for an average of 20 days and ages no less than twelve months, in respect of the rhythm of nature. This is a fine blend, a charming wine, rich yet forward. VARIETY: 100% Barbera.
VINEYARD AND TERROIR: Several estate vineyards.
VINTAGE: 2016 was a beautiful, classic vintage. Locals called it “a farmer’s year” for what is a very rare combination of high quality, purity of aromatics and generous crop. After a mild winter, temperatures dropped in March with a lot of rain that enriched the water reserves. Flowering was abundant thanks to the gentle weather conditions, shaping the vintage into one of lift and energy over concentration. Night temperatures remained low throughout the Spring, and phenological ripening was delayed until the very end of the summer. It will be reminded as one of the longest-lasting vintages of recent days, with picking starting in September and well into late October, similarly to 2004, 2008 and 2013.
HARVEST AND WINEMAKING: Fruit for our Barbera d’Alba is harvested usually in the second half of September. Each vineyard is picked at its optimal maturity stage, so to capture the richest treasure of aromatics and phenolics, thus quite often it takes more than 10 days to complete the entire raccolta. Each parcel is then individually fermented for an average time of 15 to 20 days, at free temperature below 30°C. While Barbera is often trated with shorter and vigourous macerations, we love to work with gentle punch downs and cap rinsings for longer periods, in order to extract only the finest tannins out of its skins. Malolactic fermentation in stainless steel, followed by raking.
AGING: A minimum of 12 months, mostly in stainless steel vats and with a minimum contribution of wine aged in French oak (5-10% at most).
TASTING NOTES: The 2016 Barbera d’Alba has a lively purple color. The nose is fragrant, wide, displaying purple flowers, hibai prune, wet stone and a hint of sweet spices. The mouth is succulent, with prune, small berries and a whiffle of noble spices. This wine is beautifully vibrant and balanced with a long, lingering
We had the great fortune to spend an afternoon with Guiseppe this year. His passion, and, his families passion, thoughtful, and, humble approach to their work is inspiring.
Listen to 🎧Giusseppe explore the history of Barolo, the estate, and, the wines.
Words from Giuseppe Vaira
Bricco delle Viole is like a cut of silk: pure, elegant, and ethereal. Born on the highest hill of Barolo, a promontory facing south, embraced by the Alps. It receives the first morning sun and the last ray of the evening. In autumn this vineyard seems to float above the fog, as if detached from time and light. The vineyard features material from 1949 and successive plantings in 1963, 1968 and 1985. Bricco delle Viole possesses extremely white soils. Rich in limestone, magnesium and manganese, with the contribution of high altitude and the afternoon breeze, these soils create
wines rich in finesse, floral aromas and freshness. The old vines of Bricco delle Viole are the last to be harvested – a wait that makes our heart beat faster, because the weather can change rapidly in autumn. But the patience of the farmer knows that the wait will be rewarded with high aromatic complexity and extreme finesse. The fruit undergoes a long maceration that might go as long as 45 days, including some time with a submerged cap. Malolactic conversion takes place in steel in the spring following the harvest. It’s then aged for 32 months in 25hL Slavonian oak casks before bottling.
Vajra is one of those producers that, across their range, manages to deliver sophisticated, fun wines that are great expressions of fruit. Thankfully, unlike many, Giuseppe understands restraint and oak!
“I try to make wines that give people joy. In the past wine was a food, it was necessary for sustenance. Today that is not the case, we choose to drink for pleasure. I want to make wines that bring people happiness.” Aldo Vajra
The Vajra family has quietly amassed a serious collection of vineyards that make them one of Piedmont’s larger, family-owned estates, something they have accomplished while maintaining the already high level of their entry-level wines. Every wine in the range is absolutely delicious and full of personality. I can’t recommend these new releases highly enough. Antonio Galloni