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Nebbiolo (Italian), or Nebieul (Piemontese) is a red wine grape variety predominantly associated with its native Piedmont region, where it makes the Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (DOCG) wines of Barolo, Barbaresco, Roero, Gattinara and Ghemme. Nebbiolo is thought to derive its name from the Italian word nebbia, which means "fog." During harvest, which generally takes place late in October, a deep, intense fog sets into the Langhe region where many Nebbiolo vineyards are located. Alternative explanations refer to the fog-like milky veil that forms over the berries as they reach maturity.

Outside of Piedmont, it is found in the neighboring regions of Val d'Aosta as well as Valtellina, it is known locally as Chiavennasca, where Nebbiolo is also used to make a deeply concentrated Amarone-type wine known as Sfursat or Sforzato as well as Franciacorta in Lombardy. In the Veneto, there is a small amount that some producers use to make a Nebbiolo Recioto wine.

Nebbiolo produces lightly colored red wines, which can be highly tannic in youth with scents of tar and roses. As they age, the wines take on a characteristic brick-orange hue at the rim of the glass and mature to reveal other aromas and flavors such as violets, tar, wild herbs, cherries, raspberries, truffles, tobacco, and prunes. Nebbiolo wines can require years of aging to balance the tannins with other characteristics

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2009 Barbaglia Boca Vespolia Nebbiolo 2009 Barbaglia Boca DOC
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Barolo & Barbaresco

The Piedmont region is considered the viticultural home of Nebbiolo and it is where the grape's most notable wines are made. The consistently continental climate of the region, coupled with the influences of Tanaro River produces a unique terroir for Nebbiolo that is not easily replicated in other parts of the world. The two most well known Nebbiolo based wines are the DOCG wines of the Barolo & Barbaresco zones near Alba. Barbaresco is considered the lighter of the two and has less stringent DOCG regulations, with the normale bottlings requiring only 9 months in oak and 21 months of total aging and the riserva bottlings requiring 45 total months of aging. In contrast the Barolo DOCG requires 1 year in oak and 3 years total aging for normale bottlings and 57 months total aging for riserva. The minimum alcohol levels for the two region vary slightly with Barbaresco requiring a minimum of 12.5% and Barolo 13%.(However, Barolo, as of 1999, now only requires a minimum of 12.5% as well)Nebbiolo planted in Novara and Vercelli region of northern Piedmont tend to produce lighter and earthier wines.

Nebbiolo Nebieul Grapes

The Barolo zone is three times the size of the Barbaresco zone with the different communes producing Nebbiolo based wines with noticeable distinctions among them. In the commune of Castiglione Falletto, the wines are more powerful and concentrated with the potential for finesse. Nebbiolo grown in Monforte d'Alba has a firm tannic structure and the most potential for aging. The Serralunga region produces the heaviest, full bodied Nebbiolo wines and is also the last region to start its harvest, often two weeks after other areas have begun picking. These three region located on the eastern edge of the zone have soils that are dominated by sand and limestone. In the west, the communes of La Morra and Barolo have soils dominated by chalk and marl and produce wines that are more perfumed and silkier in texture. Throughout both the Barolo and Barbaresco zones are deposit of clay which add considerable tannins to Nebbiol

Nebbiolo produces lightly colored red wines, which can be highly tannic in youth with scents of tar and roses. As they age, the wines take on a characteristic brick-orange hue at the rim of the glass and mature to reveal other aromas and flavors such as violets, tar, wild herbs, cherries, raspberries, truffles, tobacco and prunes.
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