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In the province of Torino, just below the border to the Val d’Aosta sits the tiny DOC wine zone of Carema. In this northern climate, where ripening the local form of nebbiolo (called picciolo tenero, or tender stem) is a constant challenge, vines grow on terraced hillsides along trellises which are supported by stone pillars to better expose the leaves to the sun. These pillars, along with the stone walls which reinforce the terraces, absorb the warmth of the sun and continue to radiate this warmth after the sun is gone, creating a microclimate in the vineyards in which the fickle nebbiolo grape can ripen just enough to produce lean, subtle and earthy wines with tremendous complexity. Pairing the wine with the richness of braised pork or veal can really be enlightening.

The local enthusiasm for Carema is manifested in the stubborn maintenance of these vineyards. Landslides from heavy winter rains, as well as the powerful winds in the Dora Baltea valley can rub out an entire vineyard, such that growers are constantly rebuilding their trellises and terraces.

The Carema DOC encompasses slightly less than 40 hectares of vineyard. That is less than one tenth of the total vineyard space in Barbaresco, which in turn is about a quarter of the space in Barolo. Many feel that if nature permitted a larger growing zone for Carema, it would be considered on of Italy’s greatest reds, but the limited supply of these wines makes it instead one of Italy’s best kept secrets.

Read Unchartered Italy: Carema DOC here from Decanter about the rarity of Carema DOC wines.

For more information about Carema, visit their website here.

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Carema Nebbiolo di Carema 2012 Carema Nebbiolo di Carema

Producer: Carema
Vintage: 2012
Region: Piemonte
Sub-Region: Carema
Varietal: Nebbiolo (100%)
Color: Red

Our Price: $25.99

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Carema Nebbiolo di Carema Riserva 2011 Carema Nebbiolo di Carema Riserva

Producer: Carema
Vintage: 2011
Region: Piemonte
Sub-Region: Carema
Varietal: Nebbiolo (100%)
Color: Red

Our Price: $36.99
   
 
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