The Wine: Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore 2019
Novaia Valpolicella Ripasso Classico Superiore 2019 is a red wine made from a blend of Corvina, Corvinone, and Rondinella grapes hilly vineyards in Valpolicella Classica (250-400 m a.s.l.), mainly exposed to south/south-east. Grapes are destemmed and crushed softly; fermentation with indigenous yeasts takes place at controlled temperature in oak truncated-cone vans. Made with the traditional ripasso technique, aged for 12 months in wooden barrels, 4 months in bottle. Amazing wine folks, nothing more to say really. If you've had Valpolicella Ripasso before, this is one of the best you'll ever have; if you've never had Valpolicella Ripasso, do start with this one.
The Winery: Novaia
In one of the most suggestive corners of the High Valpolicella Classica, on the top of a soft hill, a wide 15th-century manor house dominates the Marano Valley and the plain that separates it from the ancient Roman city of Verona: Novaia. Novaia means a new court, a new family in the Marano Valley. In the 15th century, the Villa was built and the Vaona family moved here from the city in 1700. The Vaona family quickly bought the surrounding lands and gained a prominent role in the local community.
With the 1800s the estate of the Vaona family expanded further, the Vaona family is one of the most important landowner families: the estate produces grapes, wines, olive oil, cherries, corn, and silkworms. Between the end of the 1800s and the early 1900s, under the guidance of Paolo Vaona, moved by a great love for the land and an innovative spirit, the company achieved rapid and remarkable commercial success. Paolo is the first in the region to bottle and sell his wines outside the province, appreciated on national markets, obtaining numerous awards in national wine competitions.
In the ‘30s Paolo’s children, Renato and Bruno, entered the business and the latter grew up distinguishing himself for his dedication to family affairs and music. On the death of Paolo and then of the still young Bruno, his two sons Cesare and Giampaolo followed and continued the family business with the name Novaia, and experiment with a new wine science and technology.
In 2005, Cristina and Marcello, the fourth generation, joined the company. Together, they began the conversion of the Novaia estate to organic production. Today Cesare and Giampaolo Vaona, with their children Cristina and Marcello, perpetuate the ancient family trade. (source: Novaia)
The Region: Veneto
Veneto is one of the most important wine regions of Italy, located in the North Eastern corner of the Italian peninsula. It borders with Trentino-Alto Adige (north), Friuli-Venezia Giulia (north-east), Emilia-Romagna (south), and Lombardy (west).
The capital of Veneto is Venice, which is also its most populous city, followed by Verona, Padua, Vicenza, Treviso, and Rovigo. The east coast of Lake Garda, the biggest Italian lake, is part of Veneto and so is the tract of Alpine foothills called Venetian Prealps.
Veneto is the leading Italian region for the quantity of wine produced – even though wine-producing regions such as Piedmont, Tuscany, Lombardy, Puglia, and Sicily all have bigger territories.
Some of its most famous wines are Amarone della Valpolicella, Valpolicella, Soave, and of course Prosecco. Other less known but equally delicious wines are Recioto della Valpolicella, Recioto di Gambellara, Raboso del Piave, and Bardolino.
Veneto’s main characteristic is perhaps the great variety of wine types produced, obtained mostly from indigenous grape varietals – Corvina, Glera, and Garganega being the most common.
This is due as much to its specific geography and climate as it is to rather peculiar winemaking techniques such as the grape drying technique employed to make Amarone della Valpolicella, Veneto’s most famous red wine.