2020 Giornata, Barbera, Panache Vineyard, Adelaida District AVA, Paso Robles.
In the last few years I have tried to shine on light on just how good these Cal Itals, California wines made from Italian varietals, are and these Gionata examples are delicious, including this beautifully purple/garnet hued Panache Vineyard Barbera that delivers satisfying ripe fruit, spice, energy and subtle savory notes. Perfect with simple pasta dishes and or robust meaty cuisine choices, this Barbera faithfully connects you with its cousins in Piedmont with a more rounded and full bodied style commonly found in the Alba zone with crushed blackberries, plums and black cherries leading the way here in this 2020 vintage, along with minty herbs, dried lavender, peony florals, a delicate earthy tone, cedar and anise. The natural acidity keeps things balanced, freshly detailed and the soft satiny tannins feel supple in the mouth, highlighting the warm of the year and the studied winemaking here, that brings out the best quality of the grape. The Giornata Barbera can be bright and juicy, which you can see a little of here, but in certain years, like this one and more deep expression comes through, though you can enjoy it right away and it is priced right to stock up on, and it is a tasty example of the quality that Giornata puts into the bottle.
As mentioned here, winemaker Brian Terrizzi’s Giornata label is seriously focused on Italian grapes, most found here on the western side of Paso Robles, the central coast and or in cooler zones of Santa Barbara county, where these varietals are now thriving, with Terrizzi especially interested in Nebbiolo, along with Barbera, Falanghina and Aglianico, which is really showing fantastic potential here in California. Terrizzi says he is producing Italian-varietal wines from vineyards that he and his wife farm mainly in Paso Robles using traditional, old-world winemaking techniques from their facility in Tin City, with everything done to promote transparency and purity, which shows in this Panache Vineyard Barbera. This Adelaida Distinct AVA vineyard, Brian adds, is set on (the) Nacimiento-Los Osos soil complex made of clay loam over weathered bedrock, with an elevation of 1150 feet above sea level. The diurnal temperatures here at Panache, as Giornata reveals, are among the highest in the region which leads to the retaining of vibrancy, while getting deep fruit density. The skins can become thick due to the large temperature swings from day to night, which leads to the extraction of structural elements in the Barbera, with Terrizzi using a combination of vessels to ferment and age his Barbera, including neutral French barrels, larger Slovenian oak casks and stainless steel. I have been thrilled with this latest set of releases and I highly recommend checking these Giornata offering out as soon as possible!
($25 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive