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Which is which?

Updated: Oct 9, 2023

During this year's harvest, I gathered three bunches of distinct grapes from the vineyard, driven by my curiosity to test the discerning abilities of Qimisola enthusiasts. Can you distinguish between Gamba di Pernice, Pinot Nero, and Barbera in below picture? Which grape variety is employed in the production of which specific Qimisola wines?

Here comes the answer:

The Pinot Nero (Pinot Noir) grapes are small to medium-sized, round, and grow in large, dense clusters resembling pine cones. They have a very thin skin with a smooth, dark blue-purple hue. This grape is renowned as a signature variety of the Burgundy wine region in France and ranks as the tenth most widely cultivated grape globally.

Barbera grapes are oval-shaped, with less densely packed bunches. They impart flavors of cherries, strawberries, and raspberries, and can also carry intense aromas of blackberries. Barbera is characterized by low mouth-drying tannins and high acidity, making it an excellent and versatile match for rich foods.

Gamba di Pernice, unlike the widespread popularity of Pinot Nero worldwide and Barbera in Piemonte, is a lesser-known, dark-skinned variety cultivated in limited quantities in the northwest of Italy. It stands as one of Piedmont's oldest varieties. One distinctive feature of this grape is that in early summer, its stems take on a fiery red hue, akin to a partridge's leg. After veraison, when the grapes mature into a blue-black, pruinose variety with a purple tint, forming medium-sized, pyramid-shaped clusters, the stalks transition to a brown-greenish colour.

So, the three grape types mentioned above are Pinot Nero, Barbera, and Gamba di Pernice, respectively. These grapes correspond to Qimisola's ranges:

  • "Gianbabbeo"(Clumsy Hans) Piemonte DOC Pinot Nero red. - 100% Pinot nero

  • "La Sirenetta"(the Little Mermaid) Rosé still or sparkling - 100% Pinot nero

  • "I Fratelli" (the Brothers) Barbera di Asti DOCG Superiore - 100% Barbera

  • "Il Babbo" (What the Old Man Does is Always Right) Barbera di Asti DOCG Superiore - 100% Barbera

  • "L'Usignolo" (Nightingale) Calosso DOC. - 100% Gamba di Pernice

Did you get them right? :-)

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