Monte Santoccio, Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore 2018
Corvina Blend｜Valpolicella, Italy
Amarone, along with its little cousin Ripasso, are among the most unique wines in the world, let alone Italy. Featured here is Monte Santoccio’s vaunted Ripasso, produced in a classic, balanced style that embodies power and precision that's easy to fall in love with.
The ripasso method pertains to a wine re-fermented (re-passed) with the skins of an Amarone – a bold, powerful wine that regularly fetches hundreds of dollars in the market. Amarone wines are made from the same family of grapes as this Ripasso (Corvina, Corvinone, Rondinella, and Molinara), in a process that involves letting very ripe grapes raisinate, evaporating the water and concentrating the flavors. Monte Santoccio’s Ripasso has their top-tier Amarone macerated with the young wine for twenty days, then aged in large Slovenian oval barrels, called botti, for twenty-four months.
Monte Santoccio hails from Fumane, the original heart of Valpolicella – the classico region – in the Veneto, northern Italy. It shows a brilliant ruby in the glass, with a nose of sumptuous black plum, dark-skinned Morello cherries, dried herbs and spices, licorice, and a hint of chocolate from that deeply-flavored Amarone wine in the blend. The palate just sings, carrying vibrant notes of menthol, cherries, black tea, and spiced plum with a finish of nutty almonds, new leather, and cocoa nib.
The style marries the power of Amarone with the lithe grace of a Tuscan Sangiovese. If you’re a dedicated partisan of Italian wine you’ll love this fragrant, delicate, and gracefully complex Veronese red. Cheers!
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