Our tasting impressions
As with the Burbero, the differences between this and the prior vintage are subtle. This 2017 is lush and lovely. The oak adds sophistication and depth without wood flavors. Once again, Luca nailed the balance despite the hot growing season. Old vines, high elevation and a top-drawer vineyard are on display here and the wine is better for both of them.
About this wine
100% Barbera from organically-farmed, southwest-facing vineyards planted over 70 years ago at 300-350 meters elevation. The soil is clay and calcareous. Only the finest grapes are selected from among the manual harvest.
Fermentation is over 15 days, after which the wine ages in barrique for 18 months and in the bottle for another 12.
About the grape
Barbera is a dark-skinned grape from vigorously growing, easy to manage vines. Barbera wines are high in acidity, low in tannins and light-bodied - although they can give the impression that they are big and hearty because of their purplish-black hue and relative roundness.
Barbera has been experiencing a Renaissance over the last couple of decades due to greater attention from talented winemakers who have discovered how to better craft the wines.
Luca's vintage perspective
2016, 2017 & 2018 each, in Luca's opinion, had optimal weather conditions. The only real difference among them is that '17 was very hot and dry, resulting in a harvest that was considerably earlier than the other two. He views the grapes from all three years to have been of exceptionally high quality.
Suggested Glassware: Grassl Liberté
Gianni Respighi, a gracious B&B and wine bar host in Tortona introduced me to young Luca Canevaro. Luca has assumed the daunting responsibility of leading the wine tenuta started by his great-grandfather about a century ago. Just as significantly, he decided to join in the crusade to resurrect and celebrate Timorasso (or Derthona, as it is traditionally known), one of Italy's truly great varieties.
Luca transformed the family business in 2016, supported by his brother Stefano (who has recently finished his oenology training) and guided by his father, Sandro. They farm 8 hectares of vineyards that are now certified organic. Production is only about 15,000 bottles per year.
Vineyards thrive at higher elevations (more direct sun, greater day/night temperature variance and enhanced drainage) and Canevaro has some of the highest vineyards in the DOC of Colli Tortonesi - up to 300-350 meters. This asset combined with respect for the land and tradition, passion and dedication has this small estate on a path to prominence. VDLT is pleased and proud to introduce this wonderful family's wines to the US.