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Barolo Wine: The Rich History Of Italy’s Finest Wine

Marie Gabrielle

Posted on September 21 2021

Bordeaux and Burgundy, take note: there's a new "B" on the block, and it's just as big and terrible as you are. We're bidding farewell to our French bottles and welcoming Barolo, the Wine of Kings. Barolo is considered to be the best when it comes to Italian reds, and while you may not be acquainted with it, don't fret!

What Is Barolo?

The Piedmont area of Italy produces Barolo, a red wine. The wines are produced from Nebbiolo, a tiny red grape variety with thin skin that is strong in acid and tannins. Nebbiolo is one of the earliest varieties to bloom and one of the latest to be harvested in Piedmont, with harvest occurring in late October. No exclusions are allowed for Barolo wines made entirely of Nebbiolo.

What Is The History Of Barolo?

It is not clear who made the first dry Barolo, but one story starts in the mid-nineteenth century, when Camillo Benso saw an opportunity to modernise his family's estate by improving winemaking techniques and planting a monoculture of grapes.. He recruited the assistance of French oenologist Louis Oudart, who was able to fully dry ferment the Nebbiolo, resulting in the first modern Barolo. Giulietta Falletti, Marchioness of Barolo, who enlisted the assistance of Louis Oudart for her large estate at La Morra, Serralunga d'Alba, and Barolo, created a Bordeaux-style wine that caught King Carlo Alberto of Savoia's attention. According to Falletti, this wine was dubbed "Barolo." It was such a great wine that it reportedly prompted King Carlo Alberto di Savoia to buy the Verduno and Roddi estates for wine production. Around the same period, Emanuele Guerrieri, the first king of Italy and the adoptive son of Vittorio Emmanuele II, Mirafiori, started growing grapes near Serralunga d'Alba's Fontanafredda. Fontanafredda is still one of the most, possibly the best Barolo producers and one of the region's longest-running estates. Because of its ties to Italy's ruling family, it acquired the moniker "the wine of kings, the king of wines," which it proudly wears to this day.

How Is Barolo Made?

The Barolo DOCG (Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita) is Italy's highest wine classification, denoting precise production techniques as well as a quality guarantee. Barolo DOCG wines must be made entirely of Nebbiolo and matured for at least 38 months, 18 of which must be in wood barrels. When a wine has been barrel aged for at least five years, the word "Riserva" may be used on the label.

What Are The Characteristics Of Barolo?

Barolo is a strong, full-bodied red wine. It has a lot of tannin and acidity, so it has to age for a long time before it's suitable to drink. In a warm vintage, it may have a high alcohol content of up to 14.5 percent. The color of Barolo fades quickly as wine matures, changing from garnet to light brick.


We can't disagree that Barolo has been called "the king of wines" for centuries. You may take our word for it, but the ideal method to discover what makes Barolo wine so special is to sample a couple of bottles of Italy's finest.