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Allegrini Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2017 £65.00
Allegrini Amarone della Valpolicella Classico
The Allegrini family estate covers 120 hectares of vineyards in the heart of the Valpolicella Classico area. The family has been growing grapes here for six generations, but the estate in its current form was founded by Giovanni Allegrini. When he passed away in 1983, it passed to his three children, who ran it together until Walter's death in July 2003. Franco now looks after the vineyards and is the winemaker, and Marilisa is the director of marketing.
The Allegrini family's south-east facing vineyards are located in the Valpolicella Classico hills at 180-280 metres above sea level. The varied soils are mostly chalk and clay, mainly of volcanic origin, which are well-draining. The older vines are 37 years old on average, pergola trentina-trained, with about 3,000 vines per hectare. Newer vines are single Guyot trained with about 5,000 vines per hectare.
Unlike in other areas of Italy, the 2017 vintage developed with very satisfactory regularity. The vineyards escaped frost and hailstorms, and while rainfall was lower than average, it was still within the norm. The dry and breezy climate, with wide variations in day-night temperatures in the final few weeks, enabled the grapes to fully express their varietal aromas in addition to ensuring their excellent health.
The grapes were dried at 'Terre di Fumane', a state of the art drying centre with controlled temperature and humidity. Under these conditions, the development of botrytis was avoided and the integrity of the fruit preserved. During the drying period, the grapes lost 40-45% of their original weight. Vinification took place in the first two weeks of January. The dried grapes were destemmed, crushed and fermented in stainless steel tanks at temperatures between 8-22ºC. Maceration lasted 25 days, with daily pumping over. The wine was racked into 100% new oak barriques (225 litres) in March for 18 months. After blending, it spent seven months in 87 hectolitres oak casks, and 14 months in bottle.
A classic of the appellation with both tradition and a sense of place. With intense aromas of ripe, dark fruit and spice, it has an imposing structure and depth, superb balance with refined tannins and a long, spiced finish.