Corvina, Rondinella, Molinara and Croatina. Valpolicella, Amarone, and Appassimento. The grapes, the wines and the methods of the Veneto look strange to Americans. It's little wonder that people in a culture saturated by talk of Merlots and Cabs feel intimidated when they read these exotic terms. It's even no surprise that some the best sommeliers shy away from Italian wine: it's a vast world with thousands of indigenous varietals, and nobody wants to feel like a novice, especially not a professional.
Like many endeavors that begin with difficulty, educating yourself about Italian wine quickly becomes a delight. The possibilities generated by wildly different grapes, regions, techniques and wines are endless. There's no place whose wines will move you so swiftly from ignorant confusion to pleasurable confusion like the Veneto. Today, I'm proud to present the 2007 Amarone della Valpolicella Classico from Nicolis, a small family producer who makes traditional, deeply tasty and altogether affordable bottlings of the Veneto's most famous wines: Valpolicella and Amarone. Though it's rare that we feature Amarone from producers other than the icons, Nicolis makes exceptional, drinkable, delicious bottles.
This Amarone will keep you warm and brighten your holidays. It's the ideal cold weather, big food wine, and it's as rich and decadent as your hopes for the upcoming year. Along with this wine, it feels natural to present two others that are perfect for your special winter nights: large format bottlings of Antinori's classy Chardonnay, Cervaro della Sala, and a classic Vosne Romanée Les Beaumonts from Emmanuel Rouget. This trio of wines presents a concert for your winter meals. I look forward to hearing how you've enjoyed them!
Today's Featured Sections Include: