Discover the Complexity of Nebbiolo at the Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening

A rare event will bring nearly 200 producers from Piedmont to New York City, offering trade professionals a unique opportunity to learn about the region’s most popular grape variety

A landscape photograph of an Italian vineyard
Representatives are gathering to discuss the best that Barolo DOCG and Barbesco DOCG has to offer. Photo courtesy of Barolo and Barbaresco.
This advertising content was produced in collaboration with our partner, Barolo & Barbaresco.

In the unique landscapes of Piedmont, Italy, the Nebbiolo grape has built its legacy as the star of Barolo DOCG and Barbaresco DOCG. The grape’s unique, globally esteemed wines are renowned for their extensive history, quality, and profound link to their origin, which is amplified by the region’s network of family-owned wineries dedicated to their craft.

For wine professionals eager to explore the nuances of Nebbiolo stateside, the Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening is an unmatched event where almost 200 wineries will showcase their individual interpretations of Barolo DOCG, Barbaresco DOCG, and lesser-known interpretations of Nebbiolo, counting over 400 labels. The event will also include a press tasting of the latest vintages and an educational seminar hosted by Nebbiolo grapevine expert Dr. Anna Schneider.  

Matteo Ascheri, the president of Consorzio di Tutela Barolo Barbaresco Alba Langhe e Dogliani, the local winemakers’ consortium, offers advice for anyone attending the event: view it as an introduction to the diversity of Nebbiolo and as a launchpad for future exploration. As the Consortium’s biggest international activation to date, and the first to dial in on the nature of Nebbiolo, the event will offer an unparalleled opportunity for wine professionals in the United States.

Exploring the Profile of Nebbiolo

Nebbiolo is the oldest indigenous red grape of Piedmont and one of the most prestigious varieties in Italy. The name of the grape stems from the word nebbia, which means mist or fog in Italian. Some attribute the name to the grape’s appearance, which looks to have a velvety, mist-like covering. Others suggest that the name derives from the tendency to harvest this late-ripening grape during early autumn fogs.

Ascheri describes the profile of Nebbiolo wines as having “elegance and refined character, but also power and structure,” a combination that is difficult to find in a single wine. According to Ascheri, unlike other varieties that have adapted to wine regions around the world, Nebbiolo’s optimum expression is tightly bound to the particular conditions of its Piedmontese homeland.

Experiencing a Nebbiolo wine starts with its color, a subdued garnet red. The wine has a sophisticated bouquet of floral and spice notes, and is capable of evolving complex profiles of forest floor, leather, and dried fruits over time. The palate is defined by a steadfast structure, complemented by a delightful tension between tannins and acidity, which makes this grape an exceptional partner to culinary classics, particularly red meats and mature cheeses such as Parmigiano Reggiano, Grana Padano, and Castelmagno from Piedmont.

Search Wines of Barolo and Barbaresco on Provi

Fans of these wines are fascinated by their historical evolution, and many are surprised to learn that there was a time when Nebbiolo was crafted into sweet or sparkling wines. Ascheri references the influence of prominent figures, like the Marquis of Falletti and Camillo Benso Conte Di Cavour in the mid-19th century, who pioneered the transformation of Nebbiolo into the aged reds we recognize today. To the delight of many drinkers, some producers have rekindled these methods, presenting non-traditional styles like sparkling and rosé interpretations alongside the classic Barolo and Barbaresco.

As many wine professionals can attest, comprehensive knowledge of any grape comes from engaging with both the wines and the region, ideally including in-person visits to the area. Thanks to the region’s concentration of family-owned wineries, visits promise to be even more insightful. “If you’re coming to Piedmont in the Langhe region, and if you are visiting a winery, you have a high probability of meeting the owner, part of the family, or the winemaker,” says Ascheri.

The Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening

With this year’s Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening, however, U.S.-based wine professionals have an unprecedented opportunity to engage with hundreds of winemakers from the region. “This is an opportunity to be in contact with many producers and to understand their specific personal interpretation and background,” says Ascheri. “This is the kind of irregularity we want to express, in a world where there is a lot of homologation.” 

A photo of Matteo Ascheri
Matteo Ascheri, the president of Consorzio di Tutela Barolo Barbaresco Alba Langhe e Dogliani, (pictured above) is excited to feature Nebbiolo at the Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening. Photo courtesy of Barolo and Barbaresco.

Dr. Anna Schneider, a former researcher at the National Research Council of Italy, will lead a Nebbiolo-focused seminar entitled “Nebbiolo, An Icon.” The session will dive into the history, origins, genetic diversity, and cultivation of Nebbiolo grapes, offering attendees a comprehensive view of Nebbiolo’s adaptability and distinctive expressions beyond Barolo and Barbaresco.

The latest vintages, 2020 Barolo and 2021 Barbaresco, show the living art of winemaking, and how each season’s narrative is captured in the bottle. The 2020 vintage promises earlier approachability and presents a good commercial vintage for customers. “They can enjoy Barolo starting in the early stages,” says Ascheri. The 2021 vintage is hailed for its balance and potential akin to the esteemed 2016 vintage. “It is a vintage where we have everything,” explains Ascheri. “We have softness, we have character, we have power.”

Both vintages will be displayed at this year’s event, offering the ultimate immersion opportunity. Ascheri’s guidance for aspiring connoisseurs is clear: delve into the world of Barolo and Barbaresco with intention. Visit the wineries, meet the minds behind the wines, and connect with the landscape that shapes these treasures. Amid the age of homogenization, Piedmont’s winemakers cherish their uniqueness, forging wines that are esteemed for their intrinsic quality and treasured for their story and the authenticity of their creation.

A photo from a previous year at an event for Barolo and Barbaresco
Nearly 200 wineries will be present for the Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening. Photo courtesy of Barolo and Barbaresco.

The wines of Barolo and Barbaresco are more than luxurious beverages—they are expressions of a place, a history, and the passionate families that continue to define and protect the noble spirit of the Nebbiolo grape. “We are different, and we like to be different, which doesn’t mean better, but that we are simply different,” says Ascheri. “And this is the most important thing that we would like to do, to show exactly our peculiarity and our personality to the world.”

To learn more and register for the Barolo & Barbaresco World Opening, click here.


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