Thursday, May 12, 2016

Loving Barbera, from Italy to Amador County and Beyond

Barbera Festival, now in its sixth year, is a testament to the love of barbera wine. With roots in Italy, barbera is a wine grape now grown by at least 100 producers in Calif. The Barbera Festival, June 11, is a chance for more than 80 Calif. wineries and a few Italian importers to share their love for this variety. 

Photo caption:  “The Barbera Festival’s Italian-American poster guy, Pete, makes room on his motorcycle to take a few bottles of Barbera to dinner with his friends.  You might spot him at The Barbera Festival, June 11 in Amador County.”

Amore for Barbera, from the Piedmont region of Italy to the hundred producers in California’s Sierra Foothills, epitomizes the love affair that wine drinkers have for this zesty, mouth-filling, low-tannin, flavorful and food-friendly red wine.

However you parse it, the affection for Barbera will be much in evidence at the Barbera Festival June 11 in Amador County. Originating as it did 800 years ago in the clay loam and lime-rich soil of Piedmont in the mountainous region of northwest Italy, the California Barbera phenomenon started in the 1970s with cuttings from the Terra d’Oro/MonteviƱa vineyard near Plymouth, Amador County. Terra d’Oro/MonteviƱa is hosting the 2016 Barbera Festival.

Barbera is grown in many California locations, and wine lovers can taste Barbera from over 80 different wineries at the Barbera Festival, including 35 Amador County wineries, 15 El Dorado County wineries, five Calaveras County wineries, and five Sonoma County wineries. Italian importers of Barbera will also be pouring tastes at the Festival.

About the Barbera Festival:
 The Barbera Festival was founded in 2011 to celebrate the barbera variety. The event quickly garnered attention throughout the West and in 2015 moved to the beautiful grounds of Terra d’Oro Winery/Montevina Vineyards, the original home of barbera in Amador County. The festival, which also helped launch the immensely successful Amador Four Fires festival, features more than 80 wineries from across California, fine local cuisine, live music and regional artists. Terra d’Oro Winery/Montevina Vineyards is located at 20680 Shenandoah School Road in Plymouth. All proceeds benefit the non-profit Amador Community Foundation. For more information, or to purchase tickets, go to

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