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Wine of the week: 2015 Michele Chiarlo Barbera d'Asti Le Orme 

Piedmont, Italy

click to enlarge 2014_michele_chiarlo_barbera_d_asti_le_orme.jpg

Retail $13

A fourth-generation Piedmont winemaker, Michele Chiarlo makes high-end barolos, barbarescos and other premium wines, but his winery's Barbera d'Asti wines garner just as much acclaim in their bargain price range. The Piedmont region's most-planted grape and Italy's third most-planted grape, barbera, is high in acid. Chiarlo sources fruit from select vineyards in Piedmont's Asti region and La Court in Nizza, where the highest quality barbera grapes are grown. For this wine, grapes were pressed and the wine transferred to temperature-controlled vats for maceration and fermentation on the skins. The wine was aged in French oak casks for eight months and matured in the bottle for eight months. In the glass, the wine exhibits a slightly rustic character with aromas of raspberry, blackberry and dried herbs. On the palate, taste cherry, red berries, plum, some earthiness, a hint of espresso, spice notes and well-integrated tannins. Aerate the wine for 15 minutes before serving. Drink it with lasagna, veal parmigiana, pasta dishes with tomato sauce, meatballs and many hearty Italian dishes. Buy it at: Lakeview Grocery and some Rouses.

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