Mission Codename Allora!
This is only the third time in our 11 years that we’re showcasing an Amarone. While we love a great Amarone, we don’t come across too many that light our world on fire. Today’s 95 point wine, the delicious Villa Mattieli 2013 Villa Mattielli Amarone Della Valpolicella is a stunner - and a steal, and we recommend it wholeheartedly!
So, what is an Amarone? And why is it typically so expensive? Amarone is a rich, typically dry Italian red wine that is usually made from partially dried grapes of the Corvina, Corvinone, and Rondinella varietals. Amarone comes from the Valpolicella region, a viticultural zone of the province of Verona, Italy. These grapes are sun-dried for about 120 days. During this time, they lose about 40% of their weight. This drying results in an intense concentration of flavors, and a high sugar content which makes for a higher alcohol content in the final wine. The finished wine from these grapes absorbs the added flavor and body, resulting in a medium-bodied wine that is dry, complex, and very flavorful.
And why so pricey? Because the grapes are so reduced in volume by the drying, more than twice as many grapes are needed to produce a single bottle of wine. This drying process requires an investment of both added time, and the space required to accommodate the extra grapes.
This Italian classic is slightly translucent with nice clarity and a crimson color that is consistent through to the meniscus. The nose is austere with a clay earth profile that will earn it some fans. The fruit is like a compote of currants and black cherry, with a kalamata olive note that catches your attention. Following the aromas on the nose, we find a wine grounded in the earth, with notes of black soil and volcanic rock. The special process of drying the grapes that the winemakers undertook translated very well, with a beautiful mature fruit flavor, cacao, and leather. The wine is exceptionally balanced with tannins that are remarkably smooth and hang out mid-palate for a lasting and thoroughly enjoyable finish. Head to the Old Country and enjoy this wine with a hearty serving of mushroom risotto.
Villa Mattielli is located close to the ancient walls of the medieval town of Soave, near Verona. The family’s terraced vineyards, which date back to the early 20th century, occupy more than 30 hectares (nearly 75 acres) of the pristine Italian countryside. For four generations, the family has been involved in the art of winemaking. Today’s rich, delicious Amarone is a testament to the care and precision of their craft.
Here’s what the wine press has to say
95 Points, Gold Medal - Decanter - “Superlative chocolate and black cherry nose with kirsch, cocoa powder and a touch of licorice joining the palate. Great complexity and uniqueness of fruit with a long expressive finish”
92 Points, Excellence Gold Medal - Gilbert and Gaillard - “Intense garnet with mature tints. Seductive nose driven by beautiful ripe stone fruits with fine spice and toast touches. Fleshy, velvety, fresh palate with a hint of softness. Very charming, still young, not very complex, sensation of harmony. Stellar.”
What the Winery Says
2013 Amarone Della Valpolicella D.O.C.G.
- Roberta Roncolato
- Veneto, northeastern Italy
- 50% Corvina
- 30% Corvinone
- 15% Rondinella
- 5% Oseleta
- Late September
- Hand picked
- Aged in French oak barrels for 12-15 months prior to bottle aging