Il Poeta Barbera d’Asti Superiore 2013

Piedmont is home to legendary Barolo and Barbaresco. So, it’s perhaps easy to assume that the region’s winemakers drink rivers of these long-lived, expensive Nebbiolo reds at home – though this is hardly the case. Behind every talented Barolo and Barbaresco producer, what you will find is another worthy “B” wine: Barbera. Made with the same-named grape and prized for its succulent cherry-plum fruit and food-friendly acidity, it's a go-to red among Piedmontese locals. And this one’s particularly special …

Brought to you by grape grower Natale Seghesio and talented winemaker Paolo Sartirano (the dynamic duo behind our exciting il Poeta Barolo), this exclusive shows off the 2013 vintage’s vibrant, elegant fruit characters beautifully.

The quality-driven Natale (aka ‘il Poeta’) is among the last of Piedmont’s traditional Masuè sharecroppers, and not only tends to his vines, but famously writes a commemorative poem that tells the rhythm and story of the vintage (check it out on the label!). Working with Natale’s premium fruit – in this case, carefully selected grapes from the rolling hills of Asti, a mecca for top-tier Barbera grapes – Paolo takes over in the cellar. The ‘Superiore’ classification signifies extra care: a minimum of 12 months’ aging, with at least six months in barrel.

Look forward to a deep ruby-red color in the glass, with attractive aromas of red plum and mocha. The palate shows a lovely depth of ripe plum, cherry and smoky notes, balanced by supple tannins and a fresh, youthful acidity.

This is the perfect partner for a bowl of Piedmont’s famous duck ragù, or a well-seasoned T-bone steak – though it’d do just as well with lighter fare. Try it with a crusty panino, or a spread of marinated vegetables, olives and Italian cheeses.