Barolo is the king of wines and the wine of kings. It’s expensive because it’s so damned good. My youngest son’s middle name is Barolo, that’s how good it is. And quite frankly it’s not very expensive at all compared to Bordeaux and Burgundy of the same quality.
Barolo is the region within Piedmont, that lends its name to the wine grown within it’s DOCG borders from the variety Nebbiolo. Nebbiolo means ‘the fog’ so named because it excels in hamlets where fog congregates in the morning, prolonging the ripening of this late ripening grape’s famously monumental tannins. Barolo has a unique combination of topographical, climatic and geological factors that make it, with the exception of neighboring Barbaresco, about the only place on earth capable of making great Nebbiolo wines.
A bit of an oddity, it has very unstable anthocyanins, meaning that it loses color, quickly turning pale with an orange tinge. Yet, uncommonly for these three structural elements, acidity, tannin, and alcohol are all at maximum volume.
Barolo is not for everyone, it is vinous rather than fruity, powerful with mouth numbing tannins. But those who love it love it dearly. They’re as site-expressive as Burgundy, as long lived as Bordeaux and as affordable as Southern Rhone.