In fact, what we did drink were Nizza that, if anything, wore their years as well as any aging heartthrob.
In this Barbera in the Glass episode, I wrap up my tasting of Monferrato’s top Barbera class – the Nizza Docg – by putting one of its biggest and boldest claims to the test. Nizza producers often tout their wines’ ability to age in the bottle as gracefully and nearly as long as Piedmonte’s often-celebrated (and usually much more expensive) reds wines.
Are they seriously onto something by singing the praises of long-aged Nizza from the bottle? Or is this just marketing talk? In my tasting of Nizza wines with one of the region’s strongest proponents, Gianni, I got a hands-on (and lips-on) chance to answer those questions for myself.
Gianni and I tasted Nizza wines going all the way back to the 2010 and 2009 vintages, so in this video we are putting red wines with nearly an entire decade of aging behind them under the critical microscope. Certainly, if a wine doesn’t have serious bottle aging potential, it is very likely to have already fallen flat on its liquid face by this point in its evolution. In other words, we could reasonably expect reds with these kinds of ages to taste a lot more like vinegar than like fine wine.
So… I know what you are thinking… What the hell happened? Did Nizza live up to the hype?
Well, I really don’t want to spoil the surprise, but I kind of stink at keeping secrets. What I will tell you is that Gianni and I were definitely not drinking any vinegar at the table on that day. In fact, what we did drink were Nizza that, if anything, wore their years as well as any aging heartthrob, while still possessing that streak of youthful enthusiasm and liveliness that beats through the heart of almost all of Astesan Barbera wines. Have a look for yourself in the video!