Tradition, Revolution, Tradition
Is there any tradition in wine, really? I think not. Wines we drink today aren’t the wines made 100, 50, or even 25 years ago. Take Barolo, a favorite of mine.
The Nebbiolo grape has a long history in the Langhe region within the Piedmont in Italy. Until the mid-1800’s, Nebbiolo based Barolo wines were sweet red wines, sometimes even sparkling. They were noted as fine wines, but they were not what we drink today. Thomas Jefferson noted the “Nebiule” wine he tasted was sweet as the silky Madeira, as astringent on the palate as Bordeaux, and as brisk as Champagne. There are lots of stories, but it seems that Giulia Falleti, the wife of the Marchese di Barolo hired a French (!) consultant, Oudart, to improve the wines, producing what became the 20th century version of Barolo. An intense, highly tannic dry red wine worthy of…
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