Valpolicella Ripasso

Perhaps wrongly regarded as the younger brother of Amarone, Valpolicella Ripasso has seen an exponential increase in consumer demand in recent years. This is certainly due to the excellent value for money it represents, but also in part to the fashion status of the name.

The term 'ripasso' has always had a very specific meaning for producers and oenologists in the Valpolicella. It is a winemaking technique which has a long and consolidated tradition in the area and which, as far as anybody knows, has no equivalent in any other region, in Italy or elsewhere. The 'ripasso' system involves macerating Valpolicella wine on the fermented skins of grapes previously used to make Recioto or Amarone. When the new Amarone/Recioto has been racked off the skins, leaving a smaller or greater amount of wine at the bottom of the vat, fresh Valpolicella wine is added to the same tank and left in contact with the partially fermented pommace.

The quality of the Ripasso depends on that of the new wine, and in particular the use of wine of the same standard of quality as the dried grape pommace, on the amount of wine from the previous vinification left in the vat and the length of the maceration. On the whole, long contact with the skins is better avoided as they have already given up their colour and fine extract and what remains are the coarser, bitter tannins present in the pips. Since these tannins are easily soluble in alcohol, there is a risk that a wine macerated too long will acquire a dry astringent quality and aromas which lack freshness. The aim of the process should be add smoothness and complexity.

  • Grapes: blend of grapes: Corvina Veronese, also known as Cruina or simply Corvina (40% to 80%) Corvinone (which may substitute up to 50% of the Corvina in the blend) Rondinella (5%-30%) and up to 15% of other non-aromatic red wine varieties recommended and/authorised for the province of Verona, with a upper limit of 10% on any one variety.
  • Colour: lively ruby red colour with garnet edges.
  • Bouquet: profumes of ripe fruit and floral nose with distinctive cherry aromas a.
  • Flavour: medium bodied wine with good structure.
  • Aging: Minimum 12 months
  • Alcohol: 12,5 %
  • Best served with: delicious with Italian starters, sausages, smoked meats, medium strong cheeses.
  • Serving temperature: 18-20 C opening the bottle in advance.