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Prior to 1894, Nebbiolo grapes were sold to make Barolo wine or simply labeled "Nebbiolo di Barbaresco". But in 1894, Domizio Cavazza, headmaster of the Royal Enological School of Alba and a Barbaresco resident, created the first cooperative, the "Cantine Sociali", by gathering together nine Barbaresco vineyard owners to make wine in the local castle that he owned.
Cavazza understood that there were differences between Nebbiolo grapes grown in the Barolo district versus the same grapes grown in the Barbaresco district and, for the first time, recognized it on the wine label.
The "Cantine Sociali" was forced to close in the 1920'S because of fascist economic rules. In 1958, the priest of the village of Barbaresco, recognizing that the only way the small properties could survive was by joining their efforts, gathered together nineteen small growers and founded the Produttori del Barbaresco. The first three vintages were made in the church basement, and then in the winery built across the square from where the Produttori is still located. United once again, the small growers continued the work started by Domizio Cavazza, producing only Barbaresco wine and enhancing both the reputation of the wine and the village.
The proud past of Barbaresco and the dedication of its creators have made the Produttori one of the greatest producers in a great wine-producing area; it... "continues to set some of the highest standards of wine making for any cooperative in the world". (Robert M. Parker, Jr.; The Wine Advocate, 2-28-90).
The Produttori del Barbaresco, founded in 1958, now has 56 members and 100 hectares (250 acres) of Nebbiolo vineyards in the Barbaresco appellation, which amounts to almost 1/6 of the vineyards of the area.Each family is in full control of its land, growing Nebbiolo grapes with centuries old skill and dedication.
The winery produces a Barbaresco D.O.C.G., a blend of Nebbiolo grapes harvested from different vineyards, and a simpler Nebbiolo Langhe suited for earlier consumption. In great vintages, nine single-vineyard Barbarescos are produced from nine classic premium sites within the Barbaresco village boundaries: Asili, Rabajà, Pora, Montestefano, Ovello, Pajé, Montefico, Moccagatta and Rio Sordo. These are the geographical names of sites where Nebbiolo grapes have always been cultivated.
The names of the single-vineyards, the total number of bottles produced, and the name of the owners of the vineyards are marked on the labels. The Produttori del Barbaresco, which vinifies only Nebbiolo grapes, produces around 420,000 bottles (35,000 cases) per year.
In a good vintage they are divided among Barbaresco (40%), single vineyard Barbarescos (40%) and Nebbiolo Langhe (20%). Produttori del Barbaresco s.a.c.