2018 Villa San Carlo Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG (barrel) – When tasted during the Anteprima tasting, it showed wonderfully. Very fresh, impressive complexity with spices, menthol, prunes, herbal, balsamic and dried cherry notes. Youthful fine-grained tannins, the palate shows refreshing bright cherry and dried fruits, some citrus and dark chocolate notes persisting too. An impressive preview of a wine that will be hitting markets in the near future, and one that will be enjoyed in the short, medium, and long term. Enjoy 2024-2035+. 93 points.
2018 San Cassiano Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG – Deep colour with a midnight black/completely opaque core. The nose is inviting with dried dark fruits, plum, prunes, tobacco and herbs. Great texture, balance, and length in this youthful Amarone. Enjoy 2025-2035+. 93 points.
2018 Vigna ‘800 Virgo Moron Classico Riserva (organic) – Fresh and elegant, this Classico Riserva greets you with inviting dried red berries, sweet spices, espresso and leather. Beautifully balanced, complex with great length on the finish. Another Amarone that consistently impresses with each vintage. 94 points.
wine review: 2018 Terre di Leone Il Re Pazzo Armani Amarone della Valpolicella Classico (barrel sample)
2018 Terre di Leone Il Re Pazzo Classico (barrel) – Complex bouquet showing dried cherry, raspberry, menthol and balsamic evergreen notes. Lovely Classico expression – great freshness and beautifully balanced with fine textured tannins and bitter chocolate persisting on the finish. Enjoy over the next two decades. 92-93 points.
2018 Albino Armani Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOCG – Albino Armani’s winery is located in Marano di Valpolicella, with vineyards reaching 500m in elevation. Armani’s high altitude terraced vineyards and the cool mountain breezes that work their way through those vineyards, help to produce the fresh and elegant style of high altitude Amarone which Armani is known for. The nose on the 2018 Amarone shows dried raspberry, cherry, herbs, and earthy notes. Very refreshing and elegant, its fine texture highlights the delicious dried red berries, cherry, and dark chocolate on the finish. Enjoy this refreshing Amarone upon release in Spring 2023 and over the next decade with a wide range of dishes from BBQ, pasta, and aged cheese. 92-93 points.
2018 Falezze di Luca Anselmi – Sweet dark fruits, luscious palate showing decadent dark and dried fruits with citrus notes. Showing great now. 93 points.
wine review: 2018 Corte Figaretto Valpantena Brolo del Figaretto Amarone della Valpolicella Classico
2018 Corte Figaretto Valpantena Brolo del Figaretto – Inky, fresh and dried sweet dark fruits, dark chocolate, brandied cherry. Dark cherry and sweet spices on the finish. Enjoy over the next decade. 92 points.
2018 Sartori Reius Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOCG – Inky, fresh and dried sweet dark fruits, dark chocolate, and brandied cherry on the nose. Full bodied, with dark cherry and sweet spices on the finish. Consistently a great expression of Amarone from this storied winery. Enjoy over the next decade with hearty dishes and aged cheese. 92+ points.
Ca’ La Bionda’s organic terraced vineyards are situated in the Marano Valley of the Classico region of Valpolicella, and since 2015 they’ve been picking a couple weeks earlier than most (as early as mid-August) to ensure the retention of that bright acidity in their wines, which is critical in support of their winemaking vision of producing terroir-focused wines with great freshness, complexity, and drinkability. 2018 Ravazzol shows delicious dried fruit, fig, cherry, spice, and tobacco on the nose. The palate is equally layered and complex, with great structure, freshness, and elegance. A premium Amarone to make room for in your cellar, every vintage. Enjoy now and over the next two plus decades. 94+ points.
2018 Secondo Marco (barrel sample) – Expressive, crisp, clean, and elegant, showing a complex bouquet of herbs, menthol, plum, prunes, and tobacco. The plate is smooth and refreshing with delicious red fruit, spice, and beautifully integrated tannins. Their vineyards, in the heart of Valpolicella Classico area, benefit from warm breezes from Lake Garda in the morning and cool mountain air in the late afternoon to create the perfect conditions for ripening whilst preserving freshness. Winemaker Marco Speri vinifies and ages each of the varietals in his blends separately, then carefully assembles them when ready to produce the expressive and well structured wines Secondo Marco has become renowned for over the past decade. 2018, although a youthful preview, is another outstanding expression of premium Amarone from Secondo Marco. You’ll have to wait a few extra years to pick up your own case as it’s still got a few years to go before release. Enjoy 2028-2048+ 95-96+ points.
2018 Le Guaite di Neomi (barrel sample) – Deep colour, concentrated, super expressive. Loaded with dried dark fruits, dark chocolate, sweet baking spices, menthol/balsamic notes. This preview shows a very youthful and well structured wine that will be outstanding in the coming years when winemaker Neomi Pizzighella deems it ready (generally ~8-10 years following harvest, expect this one to be available for sale in 2028 only… note the 2012 vintage is what’s currently available). Enjoy 2028-2040+. 94-95+ points.
2018 Cantina Lavagnoli Amarone della Valpolicella – First time tasting Lavagnoli’s Amarone and very impressed. Ruby with a garnet hue, the nose shows delicate sweet spices, dried red berries, plum, leather, and tobacco notes. Very complex, beautifully balanced, the palate repeats the aromas delivering a finely textured and very approachable Amarone to enjoy over the next decade+. 94 points.
2018 Adalia Ruvaln Azienda Agricola Camerani Marinella – This wine, named after the two spot lady bug (Adalia Bipunctata), recognizes the important role nature plays in the vineyards, like the important role biodynamic Valpolicella winemaking pioneer, Marinella Camerani, has played in crafting premium Valpolicella wines following the biodynamic tenants which guide in the production of the grapes/wines for Adalia and the family’s Corte Sant’Alda winery. This vibrant wine shows expressive dark fruit, spice, tobacco, and incense on the nose. The palate is perfectly structured with a beautiful medley of sweet and spicy fruits and an elegant fine textured finish. Enjoy over the next decade+ with rich and flavourful dishes. 94 points.
2018 Ca' dei Frati Pietro Dal Cero (barrel sample) - Rich deep colour, the nose shows dried dark fruits, cassis, prune, and sweet spices with great intensity. The palate is concentrated with delicious dried fruit and spices. Remarkable freshness on the long and beautifully balanced finish. This barrel sample of fine Amarone shows it's approachable style while young while its great structure will enable medium to long term cellaring. Enjoy 2024-2040+. 94 points.
Deeply coloured, opaque core, nose shows impressive freshness alongside the rich dried dark fruit and cacao notes. Great concentration and purity of the fruit with well integrated tannins, great structure, this early preview is impressive with great potential for when it’s released in the coming years. Tasted during Amarone Opera Prima in Verona, Italy, February 2023. Enjoy 2028-2048+. 94-95 points.
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