When taking a gastronomic dive into Italian wines one doesn’t have to taste very far before complex aromas and tastes start making their way to a discerning palate in the form of Piemonte’s Barolo wines.
We were introduced to this varietal many years ago and have really developed a love of its high tannic structure and longevity and buttery taste over time. The harsher the beginning often the more pleasant the aging.
Driving through Northern Italy this summer we made time to reacquaint ourselves with the Alba region where every little hilltop town has its own strictly controlled acreage and wine varietal, mostly variations of the fragile Nebbiolo grape.
What immediately stood out to us was the perfect balance between a discerning wine area but without the crowds or tour buses one unfortunately finds in overdeveloped with regions.
Here we found all the scenic beauty of Tuscany and all the marvelous flavor of Napa minus the crowds and overdevelopment. Barolo’s authenticity, charm and beauty are astonishing.
The langue region between the towns runs a series of biking trails, roadways and hiking trails in every direction. Barolo is just one city of many within a short distance from the others but it’s ancient cobblestone streets bring out an unforgettable sense of place.
After walking a few kilometers from La Morra which has one of the best views of Barolo itself we arrived alongside fellow wine enthusiasts out for exercise among the vines to the ancient village. Here wine shops, tasting rooms, restaurants, museums and ancient palaces made for the absolute best reward someone could hope for in this pristine landscape, a sensory overload!
The beauty of Barolo is that there never seems to be enough time to do everything. We stayed at an incredibly quaint renovated farmhouse, tasted wine in the shops, drank wine at the homestay and rifled through cellars to find precious bottles full of history and magic.
For wine lovers and enthusiasts of the road less traveled, Piemonte is your home in Italy and Barolo might just be your happy place.