Antolini “Moròpio”Amarone della Valpolicella Classico


Created by greg on Jan. 19, 2012, 4:28 p.m.

It’s a bro thing at the Antolini winery.  Brothers Pier Paolo and Stefano inherited the winery from their father Domenico, and his brother, Mario.  The winery, in the heart of Valpolicella, owns about eleven acres of vines.  The 30-40 year old vines are located on terraced, clay/volcanic soils, at an elevation of about 800-1000 feet above sea level,.  Clay is important to the brother’s grapes as water is a precious commoditiy.  The vineyards are not irrigated so the clay helps with the water retention. 

On the Moròpio vineyard, all three Valpolicella grapes are grown, Corvina, Molinara, and Rondinella. For the Amarone, the grapes are picked around the end of September.  They are put into wooden and plastic boxes and aged until they have lost about half of their original weight. These grapes are then pressed to release their highly concentrated sugars to be fermented with their skins.  The wine is aged in barriques of oak and cherry for two years.  The Amarone is then bottled and aged for another six months at the winery before it is released.

So many times the dried grapes of Amarone lead to a wine that is big, fat, and devoid of elegance.  This is not a sloppy Amarone.  It has a minerality and acidity that readily balances the fragrant plums and spiced fruit.  Along with those ripe plums, there is a nutty quality that intermingles with the fresh, vibrant fruit. But don’t think the wine lacks any punch.  It is an Amarone and delivers on the promise of the process.  It is as big and bold as would be expected.  There is just a sense of smartness to go along with the confident fruit.