A wall of chalky, salami-sandwich, vege-meat savory hits up front. Squished-bug acrid rising up from rather plumpy underpinnings. Roasted fish and sauteed mushrooms over a spicy pond-water.

Thin and dull on entry, fruit a watered-down rose hip and un-ripe pomegranate. All your Kate Moss fantasies come true on this one, it’s sexy, but oh so lean–and backed up with a hazy, cloudy, unfiltered aura of dark fruit. Kind of a *guilt without going to church* thing. Or *neighbor-kid’s mom yelling at you* sorta thing. You get what I’m saying?

I like this wine. It’s not for everyone though. Bling-bros and Paso-blend drinkers, Aussie fans and super-Tuscan people probably should steer clear. I’ll be honest: a little weirdness where the ripe meets the meagerness, but I am purposely not pulling the *unbalanced* card. It works. Especially with my rich sausage and naked tomato sauce over campanelle tonight. Now that you mention it, my meal was a bit of extremes. So the Barbera worked fine.

2012 FRANCESCHI ‘Manzzoni’ Barbera Montalcino Piemonte DOC Italy 13.0