The Barbera d’Asti wine comes from the area around the city of Asti. Five varieties of this wine are produced in this area, each with its own rules, namely the (ordinary) Barbera d ’Asti, Barbera d’ Asti Superior and three sub-variants of the Superior named: Nizza, Tinella and Colli Astiani. Where the normal Barbera d ‘Asti barely, if at all, ripens in the cellar before it comes on the market, the Superior wines must mature for at least 12 months, of which 6 months in wooden barrels and 6 months in the bottle. A longer mandatory ripening time applies to the subzones. Nizza must mature for 18 months, at least 6 months in wooden barrels, Tinella and Colli Astiani must both mature 24 months, at least 6 months in wooden barrels and at least 6 months in the bottle. The composition of the Barbera d ‘Asti (and Superior) consists of a minimum of 85% Berbera grapes and a maximum of 15% of Freisa, Grignolino and Dolcetto grapes. The only exception is the Colli Astiani subzone for which the same grapes can be used, but in a minimum 90% / maximum 10% ratio. In terms of taste, cherries, plums and black currants predominate. Cinnamon, cocoa and licorice flavors can also be expected for the superior. Barbera d ‘Asti (Superior) has achieved the DOCG (Designation of origin and guaranteed) qualification since 2008, the highest in Italy.
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