Conan the Barbera

This project wine, produced by a member of the Meridian wines team in conjunction with Araldica, is quite remarkable. The note below was written on the day I opened the bottle, but three days later it’s still dense, tannic, pure, robustly fruity and quite impenetrable. It’s Piedmont’s answer to Penfolds Grange – a wine that will age happily for many years, I reckon. The jokey marketing is quite endearing, but it doesn’t do justice to this full-throttle, modern interpretation of Barbera. It’s the sort of wine I want to attach a warning to: some will really love it; others will hate it. Available from new online retailer FindWine.co.uk.

Conan The Barbera 2007 Barbera d’Asti, Italy
14.5% alcohol. Intensely coloured. Vivid, spicy, sweet plum and rasberry fruit nose with earth and mineral notes. The palate is crunchy, vivid, extracted and tannic, with sweet berry fruits, spicy, tarry, mineral savouriness and some sweet raisiny notes. The signature here is the amazingly vivid fruit kept fresh by high acidity. Tasted blind, I’d have been tempted to say this was Australian. Pretty serious, if a little extreme this early in its life. Beautifully packaged and sealed with an expensive cork, I’d be tempted to stash a few bottles of this away. 91/100 (£12.99 www.findwine.co.uk)

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