Fontanafredda Briccotondo Barbera, 2014


Barbera.  Ba, ba, boring.


We spent over a week drinking what I thought would be novel and interesting wines, including a highly praised Muscadet (dry verging on sour), a pricey bottle of bubbly (too much gloss and not enough expertise), and (with expectations very low) a mid-week Barbera.  This blog isn’t about complaining, it’s about stumbling across value and getting excited about the craft, but when bottle after bottle disappoints, I wonder if there is just too much wine being made with labels and reviewers proclaiming otherwise?


Who turns up their nose to a decent bottle of Barbera on a Tuesday night?  Not me.  Unless it’s just like so much mediocre wine bogging down the market.  How do the professionals do it?  Taste so much mediocrity I mean—and then find gentle ways to nudge on the industry?  I’d rather have to sit through yet more franchise comic book movies and churn out 700 words for Rolling Stone; brain deterioration must be better than liver…


Here are some real people actual wine drinkers paying out of pocket corrections to the professional reviews:

“Packed with black fruit.”  No.  Burnished with fruit flavour.

“Spice overtones hinting at black pepper and cinnamon.”  Hinting being the operative word.  Some fundamentals, as opposed to overtones, would be appreciated.

“Sweet, soft tannins come together in a closely-woven texture.” Crude tannins diminish any complexity in the wine and leave it flat.

“A crisp freshness provides a long tasty finish.”  A rather pedestrian fruity finish will lead you to buy another label next time round.


Price: A mere $15 in Ontario.  $22 and more in BC.  Go figure.


Market Liquidity: When what should be value disappoints.


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