Terra d’Oro Barbera 2014 Wine Review

Summary: Terra d’Oro Barbera is highly unique and very impressive!



by Phillip Koh.


I have gotten to know Terra d’Oro winery through my association with #wininghourchat on twitter which happens every tuesday, and I was advertising my other (previous) blog phil’s blogs (which is on hold with this consolidation to food and wine blog which you are reading now).  I couldn’t find any Terra d’Oro at the Total wine here in Jacksonville Florida so once they have found that out they have sent me their famous wines (this Barbera, and the Amador County Zinfandel) to me at free of cost to me. This was the first time this has ever happened, so it was even more special because of that.


closest I can describe is black cherries. deep purplish red. some of that can be seen in the photos above


Sweet aroma opens up to your nose. Spicy but not musky.  Fine spices and newish oak.  Smells juicy as well.  it has a beautiful fruit with flavors of fresh strawberries. smelled like young oaked pinot noir. it also had a bouquet of flowers that will open up beautifully up to your nose once you start to sniff into the glass. Blackberry, Raspberry, plum. dried herbs like dill.


There is a lot of fresh strawberry in the taste, and bright ripe red and black cherry. Blackberry. Ripe plum. has a clean yet juicy taste. I would describe it as Off-Dry. slightly warm in the back of the throat which is consistent with its 13.5% alcohol rating. It has a long, spicy finish. I would describe it as white pepper. licorice and velvet and fine new leather feel to the tongue. remind me of a good Malbec, except tasted brighter.  fine but noticeable tannin. Soft like pinot noir, but spicy and bold like shiraz or cabernet. tannins like between pinot noir and merlot  (low tannins closer to pinot). has a floral quality to it as well it’s very nice (bouquet of flower).  Taste bold, lightly jammy,  ripe fruits. Not astringent but still taste like skin a lot. Taste is very powerful and forward, frontal attack like shiraz,  its like combination of everything including that has really nice bright acidity that cuts across the thicker layers of bold black fruit taste, its quite remarkable. Very big fruit is prominent and powerful but not overpowering.  Fine cacao powder/mocha, bit of tobacco smoke, and tar. light blackberry jam.even a bit of red ripe apple. medium body, light base with a lot of overlay of flavors and structure.

what makes this wine different:

it drinks like an uncommon combination of shraz cab petit sirah / sangiovese etc but not much to compare to because of different part of it coming together that is very unusual in combination. like bright cherry acidity with oaky and deeper and muskier flavors.  The sheer fact that it is a Barbera, which is not a popular type of wine / grape varietal like Cabernet or Merlot so that makes it highly unique in and of itself and in a bigger picture especially being produced in the renowned wine region of Amador County in California.

The Verdict: Buy this Barbera Wine next time you see it. enjoy with or without food. and my recommendation isn’t only because the generous people at this winery sent me these wines to try at no cost to me. I can see this wine in a social setting with best friends or a dinner hosting an important guest, to a wine night by yourself or with your significant other. This wine is truly extraordinary and very friendly as well, which means you don’t need to be an experienced wine snob to be able to enjoy with the people you love. Try it, you won’t regret it!


Notes from Terra d’Oro:

Suggested Retail Price:



100% Barbera

Alcohol 13.5%

barrels produced 160

release date: April 2016

Terra d’Oro company tasting notes:

The Terra d’Oro 2014 Barbera is lush and inviting, showcasing notes of spice and cherry cola that graze the nose. Nuanced flavors of dark juicy cherries, vanilla and hints of cinnamon entice the palate and lend a rich mouthfeel with bright acidity, yet soft, indulgent tannins. The Terra d’Oro 2014 is an extremely versatile wine, the perfect complement to a roasted pork drizzled with mango glaze.

Contact information of Terra d’Oro:

(209) 245-6942


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