Dolcetto, meaning 'little sweet one' in Italian, is the third most important red grape in Piemonte after Nebbiolo and Barbera. It is fully fruited and quite delicious, especially young, and is a good alternative to Barbera for everyday drinking as its low acidity makes it extremely approachable at an early age, not unlike a cru Beaujolais. Dolcetto is soft, plush and round, smelling and tasting of blackberries and blueberries with hints of almond and licorice in the best examples. While grown all over northeastern Italy, it has lost ground to the firmer and longer lived Barbera since phylloxera. Dolcetto reaches its best potential in Asti, Acqui and Alba but it is in Dogliani where it is esteemed highly enough to have been awarded a DOCG.
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