Never mind, I guess I had some invalid text formatting in there. Onward!
Tasted lightly chilled, of course.
Very pale yellow; virtually translucent when held up to the light. Even for grigio, this was light. Its legs were wide-spaced (~2cm on a rather large glass) and thin.
First scent I got was, oddly enough, oak. A lot of oak; if I didn't know better, I would've guessed this was a Chardonnay (a crisp one; this thing wasn't buttery). Subtle pear, apple, and a light floral scent at the end.
After 15 minutes, the pear emerged much stronger, and the oak quieted down to a slight hint.
Ah, the crux. Tart, for a grigio, with a mild alcohol burn on the tip of the tongue. The apple came out along with a hint of the pear, but overall it was rather dry. Not a fruity white at all; surprising (in my experience) for this varietal. Mild-heavy acid. Lingers well on the palate; the apple surges forward and recedes into citrus (mostly lemon, hint of orange perhaps). The acid really kicks in at the end, and almost transitions to buttery, but not unpleasantly so.
After 15 minutes, the lemon emerges much stronger, perhaps due as much to time as it is to warming up.
Light fish (trout, bass, tilapia), maybe an herb-butter chicken breast. Definitely not built for high-acid foods.
It should be noted that at this point I had a glass and a half or so of the grigio in me, but I think my notes are still solid.
New/dark brick; translucent at the center, but nice gradient inwards. Reminiscent of light cherry; very pretty, but not like the deep ruby of a gorgeous petit. Medium-width closely-spaced legs (~.5-1cm).
Heavy on the jam! Strawberry comes to mind first, carrying with it mild-heavy currant and just a touch of tobacco (or perhaps leather).
15 minutes brought the currant out to "strong", along with mild plum and a light earthiness, for lack of a better description.
Immediate response: tobacco in the nose is definitely present, almost prominent. The raspberry also comes out, but not overwhelming; it brings a pleasant tartness. Very light alcohol burn to it; after the grigio, it's almost unnoticeable, but it becomes stronger when it hits the back of the throat. Low acid and tannin content--I would definitely say this wine is not built for long-term aging.
After 5 minutes, the plum emerges stronger than before; raspberry quiets down a bit, which is nice. The tartness was almost overwhelming at the start.
After 10, it's reminiscent of a pinot noir, actually: a light fruit splash with a lingering salty-ish finish. Mild strawberry (quieted down a bit too). The complexity doesn't really linger on the palate; probably about 5 seconds or so. As it lingers, it fades to a mild acidity with a light currant aftertaste.
Finally, after 15 minutes, the currant re-emerges as the dominant force. Raspberry also comes back with a punch, but much less tart than before. Almost like the berries ripened ;) The Pinot-like saltiness is almost completely gone again, and the tannins have emerged, transitioning from low to mild.
Basically, things that you would pair with sangiovese: tomato pasta, pork chops; non-smoky foods would be my suggestions. Definitely not a big meal like barbecue or grilled foods.
Both wines were decent, and rather surprising. The grigio was much more chardonnay-like than I anticipated, with hints of butter and little of the strong fruit I usually associate with it. Still, it's a refreshing wine, and would do well as a summer glass.
The Barbera surprised me simply with its variety; it transformed so many times, I was hard-pressed to keep track. I'm continuing to taste, but I think my palate is becoming suspect. I'll post additional comments tomorrow after a good day of exposure to see how they hold up.