At the beginning of the 19th century, Barbaresco was still vinified as a sweet wine. The development of Barbaresco only began at the end of the century with the founding of the Cantina Sociale di Barbaresco. The winegrowers represented in the cooperative brought the first wines onto the market with the 1894 vintage, which now officially bore the name Barbaresco.
It still took until 1966 before the protection consortium for Barolo/Barbaresco introduced the Barbaresco cultivation area and classified it as a DOC. In 1980, the cultivation area was then recognized as a DOCG. The cultivation area includes the following 4 municipalities:
Barbaresco, Neive, Treiso and S.Rocco Seno d'Elvio d'Alba.
The entire wine-growing area covers 730 hectares and 114 wineries produce around 4.3 million bottles of Barbaresco a year. (Status: 2014)
The wine production in this DOCG growing area is subject to very strict cultivation and production conditions.This includes, among other things, the yield, the alcohol content, the selection of the grape variety, the aging and the storage time of the wine.
Barbaresco was the first wine-growing region in Italy to establish a site classification in 2007. The definition of the sites and their limits were determined by the agricultural commission of each municipality in consultation with the farms concerned.
These sites, called crus, have no binding hierarchy and are not a scale of values, butdefine geographically appropriate zones. For example, the north-facing slopes and valleys were not taken into account. A total of 75 crus have been officially established in the Barbaresco growing region.
The most important crus include:
Albesani, Asili, Gallina, Martinenga, Montefico,Ovello, Pajè, Rabaja, Rio Sordo and Ronchi.