Ariota refers to the breeze that caresses these 20 year old Barbera vines atop a hill in Monforte d'Alba. La Torricella's vineyards sit at approximately 500 metres, making them some of the highest in the region. This ever so slightly cooler aspect means fresher, more aromatic wines - a hallmark of La Torricella's range. Barbera d'Alba DOC wines are smooth, intense and complex, the pinnacle for this native Italian grape variety. Barbera is often seen as a fresh, fruity table wine (and none the poorer for it) but in this DOC and to a certain extent Barbera d'Asti, the grape shows off how well it takes to oak, greatly increasing the wine's structure. Young winemaker Silvia Pressenda ferments the grapes in stainless steel first, then puts the wine into small used French oak barrels to mature for around eight months, following that another six months in bigger oak barrels. To taste, it is deep, earthy and so elegant, like all of Silvia's wines. You get some red cherries, then waves of blackberries and plums. This was rated as a top five wine by the MrVine Tasting Panel who said 'Black cherry and cola on the nose, alongside coffee and cocoa – classic Barbera. Lovely concentration and a satin-soft, dry finish.' Delicious with pasta and a rich, tomato-based ragu, a spicy puttanesca sauce, fettuccine alla Bolognese, veal in a creamy sauce, or cheese such as Taleggio.