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This story originally appeared in the Napa Valley Register.
Barolo. Just saying the name sounds important. It sounds regal. It sounds strong. When I lived in the Piemonte area in Italy shortly after college, I knew very little, if anything, about wine. But on the table at every meal, I was drinking Dolcetto and Barbera on a daily basis. It was on special occasions that my friends would pull out a bottle of Barolo. I did not have the vocabulary to describe wine. But I knew that this was a special wine.
At Pebble Beach Food and Wine, a panel of sommeliers lead a discussion of Barolo as we sat down for a tasting of the Giacomo Borgogno wines from 1967 to 2010. Founded in 1761, Giacomo Borgogno is the father of Barolo, the original Barolo producer. He was the first to put the local wine into a bottle and commercialize it, beginning the legacy. The Borgogno family managed the estate for 247 years until 2008 when they sold it to the Farinetti family and a new evolution for the winery began.
Barolo has always been a classic wine, considered one of the best. The name implies a big, bold wine, but in the glass, the lack of a deep color contradicted this.
This story originally appeared in the Napa Valley Register. As we look back at history, we can always find markers where something shifted and altered the future. Each of these significant markers have changed paradigms in life. These are game-changers, such as the invention of the car, the smart phone and every technology we use today.
We can also find markers in the wine industry that have transformed the industry. Breakthroughs in winemaking technique, heralded births of new regions and cultural moments have resulted in wines that have changed the world of wine as we know it.
“Over time, there are wines that changed our perspective in one way or another. These wines transcend their flavor. These are wines with history and they conjure memories. Each in their own way has changed the world of wine,” explained Ray Isle, executive editor of Food and Wine Magazine, as he moderated a panel at the 11th Annual Pebble Beach Food and Wine.
Along with four sommeliers — Eugenio Jardim, Shelley Lindgren, Kelli White and Master Sommelier Fred Dame — we tasted through eight wines that have changed the world of wine.
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