The 2021 Barbera d'Alba Scarrone Vigna Vecchia is endowed with tremendous depth and resonance. Black cherry, plum, smoke, licorice and chocolate are all dialed up to the maximum. The Vigna Vecchia is the most extracted of the Vietti Barberas. As such, it also retains the clearest link to the wines of the past. It's a fine effort to be sure, but it is not meaningfully better than the straight Scarrone.
The 2021 Barberas are fabulous. These are wines I bought often as a young consumer and continue to enjoy as often as possible. Ripeness and oak impact have been dialled back, which really allows the purity of the fruit to come through.
Drink 2025 - 2036
Antonio Galloni, Vinous.com (January 2024)
About this WINE
The Vietti family has been producing wine for four generations in Castiglione Falletto, at the heart of the Barolo area. Carlo Vietti founded the winery in the 1800s and his son Mario and the next generations carried on his legacy, focusing on improving the production.
Then, in 1952, Alfredo Currado (Luciana Vietti’s husband) was one of the first to select and vinify grapes from single vineyards (such as Brunate, Rocche and Villero). This was a radical concept at the time, but today virtually every vintner making Barolo and Barbaresco wines offers “single vineyard” or “cru-designated” wines.
Today, the winery is in the hands of Luca Currado Vietti and is considered to be one of the very best Piedmont producers. Their wines are highly sought-after, with beautifully designed labels as well as wonderful wine. In 1970, Alfredo and Luciana decided to support to some local artists and have selected labels turned into artworks. Artists such as Gianni Gallo, Eso Peluzzi, Pietro Cascella, Mino Maccari, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Claudio Bonichi, Valerio Miroglio, Pierflavio Gallina, Gioxe de Micheli, have had their works displayed to a much wider audience via the bottles of Vietti wines. In 1996 the most recent artist series label came from American realist Janet Fish on Vietti’s 1990 Barolo “Villero.” The whole collection of artist labels was shown at the Museum of Modern Art of New York
Barbera d’Alba is a red wine made from the Barbera grape variety in the Alba region of Piedmont, Italy. It is one of the most well-known and widely produced Barbera wines in the Piedmont region and holds the prestigious Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) designation.
The grape is a high-yielding variety known for its rich colour, high acidity, and low tannins. These characteristics make Barbera wines generally approachable and food-friendly, often described as lively, vibrant, and easy to drink.
The wines typically showcase red and black fruit flavours, such as cherry, raspberry, and blackberry, with some expressions exhibiting notes of plum and blueberry. The wines often have a pleasing acidity that gives them a refreshing and tangy quality. In some cases, subtle hints of spice, earthiness, and floral aromas may add to the wine’s complexity.
The oak ageing process is typical for many Barbera d’Alba wines, which can impart additional layers of flavour and texture, complementing the grape’s natural characteristics. However, some producers opt for stainless steel or neutral oak ageing to preserve the wine’s primary fruit flavours and freshness.
Barbera d’Alba is versatile when it comes to food pairings. Its bright acidity and medium body make it a fantastic match for various dishes. It pairs excellently with Italian cuisine, such as pasta dishes, risotto, pizza, and roasted meats. The wine’s acidity also allows it to pair well with more decadent and fatty foods, making it an excellent choice for savoury dishes.
While Barbera d’Alba is often overshadowed by the more renowned Barolo and Barbaresco wines of the Piedmont region, it remains a beloved and cherished wine among locals and enthusiasts. Its combination of approachability, versatility, and excellent value makes it an appealing choice for everyday enjoyment and a delightful introduction to the wines of Piedmont.
Barbera is planted extensively in Piedmont and south-west Lombardy and accounts for over 50% of the wine produced in the region. The majority is sold simply as Barbera del Piemonte, but the best wines are the DOCs, Barbera d'Alba and Barbera d'Asti. It ripens late (after Dolcetto but before Nebbiolo).
The wines are usually ruby red in colour with notably low levels of tannins. They have a pronounced acidity that can be accentuated by overproduction. Barbera wines range from light, tart mouthwashers through to powerful, intensely flavoured wines that require extended cellaring.