Nebbiolo

Nebbiolo, pronounced NEH-bee-oh-low, is such a unique variety. The name is derived from the Italian word Nebbia meaning fog.

Two theories for the name exist. The first that it refers to the fog that the vineyards of the Langhe are often immersed in. Second that the natural bloom that covers the grapes gives them a foggy appearance. Given the latter applies to most red grapes I prefer the former! There are 4 main clones of which Nebbiolo Lampia dominates over  Nebbiolo Michet, Rosé (now proven to be a different variety), and, Bolla.

Where is it grown?

Southern central and north Piemonte: Langhe including Verduno, Roero, Ast, Carema, Biella, Novara and Vercelli. In Alto Piedmonte’s Gattinara, it is known as Spanna, we have seen Giacomo Conterno buy Nervi to produce wines in this region. It is also grown in the lower parts of the Valle d’Aosta where it is known as Picotendroi, and, Valtellina in Lombardy where it is called Chiavennasca among others.

What does it taste like?

The ultimate case of not judging a book by its cover, Nebbiolo, at first appears pale in colour, old wines can have the appearance of rusty tap water.

Then you smell it! The aroma of most red wines is dominated by fruit characters. In contrast, Nebbiolo’s aroma is typically a mix of complex secondary aromas, earthy, tarry, spice, rose, citrus peel, woody herbs like rosemary, liquorice, phenol, dark chocolate, tobacco, truffles, leather, and, dark cherry fruit, often more evident on the palate. You’ll see this difference immediately by comparing it two the other two main Piedmontese varieties Barbera and Dolcetto.

Good Nebbiolo has a core of fruit running the length of your tongue, along with layers of those same secondary characters. Nebbiolo’s grape tannins give it a distinct texture, that for those who have not tried it before can seem hard, and, unyielding. Look for the quality and depth of tannin.

Achieving well balance tannin, alcohol, and, acidity makes for great Nebbiolo.

More than most other Italian wines, Nebbiolo, demands food to be at its best. A little fat and salt, enhance the texture and bring out the flavours.

Giovanni Rosso!

Oddero's 2016's


About Oddero

In Australia, we have wineries that have been around for 150 years. In Germany 4-500 years. Oddero sit in the middle with around a 300 year history.

If only those vines could talk. Now with 35 ha of vines across Barolo and the Gallina Cru in Barbaresco the estate continues to evolve with thoughtful intent.

Like many of the best estates in Piedmonte the attention to detail in the vineyard has lifted a notch or 3 and practices are now organic. I’d love to try their honey and hazelnuts. Italian honey is the bomb!

The film below is in Italian, seriously, just soak it up!

The podcast from Levi Dalton with Isabella Oddero from 2009 and one with Giacomo Oddero that just dropped is well worth a listen.


Vietti's 2016's



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      Olek Bondonio's 2017's

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      2016 Serafino Babraesco Montestefano

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