The Wine: Valpolicella Ripasso Superiore 2019
Brigaldara Valpolicella Ripasso Superiore is a red wine made from a blend of 55% Corvina, 25% Corvinone, and 20% Rondinella grapes from 40-50-year-old vines. Valpolicella wine is refermented on Amarone pomace for about 5 days, with short pumping overs to keep the upper part wet. The wine is then aged for over one year in large wooden barrels. Medium to full body red wine, ripe red fruit and a touch of spice, but very nuanced; one of the freshest Ripasso I've had.
The Winery: Brigaldara
A thousand years of history, one hundred and twenty hectares of property - forty-seven of which are planted with vines - distributed in three different areas of Verona: Valpolicella Classica, Valpantena and Eastern Valpolicella. A historic family, the Cesari, that has owned the villa and the surrounding land since 1928, who is committed to the enhancement of a rich and heterogeneous property. A team of young winemakers and agronomists dedicated to the study and customization of each intervention in the vineyard, to enhance the terroirs and microterroirs that make up the different souls of the wines that are here produced. (source: Brigaldara)
Brigaldara was awarded the the Sustainable Viticulture Award by Gambero Rosso for 2022. No pesticides in the vinyeard, regenerative agricultural practices, use of renewable energy, drastic reduction of bottle weight, the monitoring of energy and water usage, as well as efforts to create a positive relationship with its employees.
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.