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Rizzardi Villa Rizzardi Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico 2011
This sensational Amarone is crafted from grapes mostly grown in the Rizzardi family’s Pojega vineyard. Here the mature vines have an average age of 30 years and are planted on clay and limestone soils which help to produce intensely flavoured and precise Amarone wines. All of the grapes for the Villa Rizzardi Amarone are harvested by hand and undergo a rigorous selection process in the vineyard.
After the harvest the grapes are dried in a well-ventilated room in the traditional way for Amarone for three and a half months until they turn into raisins. The grapes are then fermented slowly over the course of a month to extract plenty of flavour, colour and tannin from the skins. The next step in the winemaking process is 12 months of maturation in small oak barrels followed by an extra 24 months resting in large 25 hl barrels.
The result is an opulent Amarone which strikes a perfect balance between rich, succulent fruit flavours and fresh acidity. There is a generous full body, soft tannins and a firm structure which makes this wine a great partner for hearty beef stews and meaty pasta dishes. The Villa Rizzardi Amarone is also an excellent candidate for extended cellar ageing.
Fasoli Gino Amarone Valpolicella Corte del Pozzo 2014
Seductive crushed blackberries, sweet baking spice and cherries soaked in brandy delight the nose, while the palate offers a firm full body, soft tannins and concentrated flavours of wild forest fruits, cassis and raisins. This well-structured wine has a bold personality which is best paired with hearty dishes like pappardelle with venison ragu or rigatoni bolognese.
Amadio Fasoli founded the family winery in 1925 when he began making wine for local bars on his fruit and vegetable farm in the Illasi valley close to Verona. Today the fourth generation of the Fasoli family lovingly craft this magnificent Amarone from Corvina, Corvinone and Rondinella grapes which are grown by local grape farmers who have been working in partnership with the estate for decades.
The flagship red wine of the Veneto region, the Fasoli’s Amarone is made by drying the grapes in small wooden boxes for 5 to 6 months following the harvest. The wine is then fermented and matured in oak barrels for at least three years. This produces a powerful red wine which can be cellared for another ten to fifteen years to allow the wine to continue to develop and evolve.
Brunelli Amarone Campo Dei Titari Riserva 2013
The Brunelli family have lived amongst the gentle rolling hills of the Valpolicella wine region since at least the 18th century. For generations the family worked the land of a noble family from Verona, slowly purchasing parts of the estate over the years. Finally in 1936 they were able to achieve their dream of making their own wines under the Brunelli label.
These days the estate is looked after by Luigi and Luciana along with their son Alberto who have dedicated themselves to preserve the region’s little-known indigenous grape varieties and traditional winemaking techniques. Their flagship Amarone wine, the Campo del Titari, is a careful composition of local Corvina, Rondinella, and Oseleta varieties which the family makes only in the very best vintages in limited quantities.
This bold, characterful wine is made with carefully selected grapes which are harvested at optimal ripeness and then left to dry over the winter to intensify their flavours. The grapes are then slowly fermented and matured in large oak casks for 48 months to add a delicious spicy character. On the nose fragrant hints of smoky tobacco, cacao and vanilla gently mingle with dried fruit, brandied cherries and plum jam aromas. The first sip is incredibly smooth and well-rounded with a firm structure, balancing freshness and seductive ripe berry flavours. It is recommended to decant this wine at least two hours before you plan to serve it to reveal all of its delicate nuances and subtleties.
Pra Amarone Della Valpolicella 2012
A beautiful deep ruby in colour, this really is a blockbuster of a wine if ever there was one! Aromas of ripe plums, cherries, herbs and spice explode from the glass. The flavours are concentrated and rich. Cherry and plum mixed with citrus, spice, herbs and a note of chocolate combine perfectly. The wine is complex and multi layered with great acidity that needs to balance with fine tannins and a massive 17% – it manages to do this fantastically well. The finish is long and luxurious with note of chocolate and spice at the end.
This is a great wine to drink on its own or match it with roast beef, lamb, game, stews and strong cheese.
Graziano Pra is a name synonymous with some of the best wines in Italy – and this is no exception! The grapes are placed in a drying room for 2 months which concentrates the flavours within the grapes. They are then macerated in stainless steel vats for 15 days, go through a secondary malolactic fermentation before spending 3 years in oak barrels to mature prior to bottling.
Graziano Pra spent a long time looking for the very best vineyard site. He eventually settled on a site that was high up the marl walls of the Valle di Mezzane, near Verona. It gave the perfect combination of soil, sun and cooling breezes associated with the Monti Lessinin Hills and the 500m elevation. The yields are very low but the quality is very high resulting in wines with more character, body and depth.
Stefano Accordini Acinatico Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2016
Decanting time: 2 hours.
This Acinatico Amarone from one of the world most renowned estates, is a deep garnet red in color. The inviting warm, spicy bouquet, delivers a strong, complex aroma of dried fruit and emerging hints of vanilla.
Hailing from the Veneto region in northern Italy, the grapes (made primarily from Corvina), are harvested in the first week of September and air dried through traditional viticulture, which offer a tightly nuanced and restrained floral and aromatic taste absent from sugars.
This vintage benefits from at least two hours of aeration and is best served in a large glass to allow for the more subtle tones, like vanilla, the opportunity to expand. Gentle acidity heightens the discrete, crisp mouthfeel. Dryish to taste, this elegant vintage has soft, fine tannins, is immensely rich and broad, and possesses a subtle underlying core that benefits from its excellent structure, leading to a lingering, soft finish. The Stefano Accordini winery employs traditional methods of viticulture, offering some of the highest quality grapes from their low-yielding vines.
This Acinatico Amarone is still considered young and will keep well through 2024-2034 if stored properly. Serve with game, venison, grilled meats and aged cheeses to experience the sophistication this vintage lends.
Zyme Amarone della Valpolicella 2013
This majestic Amarone opens with notes of dried herbs, leather, smoky tobacco, and blackberries and blackcurrants, while the first sip reveals a bold full body, firm structure, and smooth and refined tannins. The palate is characterised by rich dark berry flavours seasoned with hints of sweet spices, baked earth, and leather which linger long on the tongue.
Winemaker Celestino Gaspari learnt the art of making magnificent Amarones while working with the legendary Giuseppe Quintarelli who would go on to become his future father-in-law as well as his mentor. After working as a consultant winemaker and helping to launch over a dozen wineries in the Veneto, Celestino decided to focus on realising his own dream and founded Zyme in his garage.
The grapes for this wine are sourced from old vines planted in the Negrar di Valpolicella commune and the wine is only made during the very best years. Following the harvest in late September the grapes are dried in the traditional manner for around 3 months to concentrate the flavours and sugar content. The grape must is then left to macerate and ferment using the wild yeasts naturally in the environment for some 2 months. The final step is extended maturation in huge Slavonian oak casks for at least 5 years and a further year of bottle ageing.