Nizza Riserva 2018

Vineyard: Tenuta Olim Bauda
Region: Piedmont

Tasting Notes 

A blockbuster, jam-packed with blackberry, cassis, baking spices and dark chocolate. A bit brooding, the notable acidity is important to provide balance. The fairly marked tannins are a bit of “chew”, but are supple enough to enjoy in its youth. This is one of the biggest and showiest Barberas you will find, but with the Piedmontese sensibility and panache. Put a light chill on this and pair with roast venison, smoked brisket or an antipasti board featuring salamis and cheese (preferably Toma).


Barbera is a red Italian wine grape variety that produces good yields and is known for deep colour, full body, low tannins and high levels of acid. When young, the wines offer a very intense aroma of fresh red cherries and blackberries. In the lightest versions, notes of cherries, raspberries and blueberries; and with notes of blackberry and black cherries in wines made of more ripe grapes. Many producers employ the use of toasted oak barrels, which provides for increased complexity and aging potential. The lightest versions are generally known for flavours and aromas of fresh and dried fruit. The most powerful and structured examples can be found in the Nizza DOCG.


An outstanding high-quality wine region in northwest Italy, widely considered the country’s most stable and evolved viticultural area. Its temperature and rainfall mirror Bordeaux. The vast majority of Piedmont’s terrain is mountainous or hilly, creating optimum elevated vineyard sites for the region’s best varieties. Of those, Nebbiolo enjoys the greatest notoriety and acclaim. The grape reaches its highest potential in the sub-regions of Barolo and Barbaresco where it is made into incredibly structured, complex, and ageworthy wines. Approximately half of Piedmont’s vineyards are planted with Barbera. The past thirty years have seen significant improvement in Barbera-based wines, with some commanding price levels that approach those of Barolo and Barbaresco. Prior to 1980, white wines were, for the most part, an afterthought, but they are now gaining acclaim and popularity in Italy and abroad. Of particular interest is the resurgence of Gavi, made from the Cortese grape, and the low-alcohol, frizzante Moscato d’Asti.


Located in the commune of Nizza Monferrato, the Olim Bauda vineyard soil profile is alluvial (sedimentary deposits) on top of clay sandy marls. Grapes are trained via Guyot system. This vineyard is planted with Moscato and Barbera. Barbera plantings date to 1979 and 2000. The Olim Bauda site is one of the warmest in Asti, allowing Barbera to fully ripen and show its great potential. Grape yield does not exceed 60 quintals per hectare (depending on the vintage). Harvest in the Bauda vineyard takes place in the first week of October and grape selection is completely made by hand.


Individual clusters are hand-selected from the acclaimed Bauda vineyard in the Nizza DOCG. These perfect berries are pressed, in the evening, into stainless steel fermenters, where they undergo a long, slow, cool fermentation to preserve primary aromas. After maceration and fermentation are complete, the wine is transferred to French oak barrels for 30 months of elevage before being bottled, unfined and unfiltered. The wine is aged a further 6 months before release.

Cellar Profile

The Bertolino family’s origins are in the village of Castelnuovo Calcea, in the Asti district of Piemonte. There, more than a century ago, the family began their venture in both winemaking and the wine trade. In the 1920s, the family moved to the neighbouring commune of Nizza Monferrato and the first Bertolino license to sell wine was dated there, on June 18th, 1927. In 1961, the family bought the villa Bauda at Incisa Scapaccino. They created the “Tenuta Olim Bauda” that soon became famous for Freisa, Moscato and, above all, Barbera. Following the tragic death of Bertolino Sr. in 1985, the family was forced to close the winery and sell their prized fruit to other producers in the area. In 2000, the family decided to re-establish the winery and its winemaking traditions. Today, the estate is owned and operated by the three Bertolino siblings: Dino, Diana and Gianni. Their wines are at once modern and classic, loaded with fruit, intensity and brawn and backed by elegance, structure and refinement.

Wine Type: Red

Variety: Barbera

Classification: DOCG

Orientation: South/South-West

Appellation: Monferrato

Gradient: 300 masl

Soil: Sand, clay and limestone

Farming Practice: Sustainable with organic practices

Residual Sugar: <1 g/L

Alcohol: 15.5%

Malolactic: Yes

Bottle Size: 750 ml

Acidity: 8.15 g/L

Other Practices: Sustainable