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Allegrini La Grola 2015 £26.95
ALLEGRINI LA GROLA
The Allegrini family estate covers 100 hectares of vineyard 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 director of marketing.
La Grola was bought by Allegrini in 1979. It is situated at 310 metres above sea level. The 30 hectare vineyard has a south-easterly aspect, well-drained calcareous and clay soils and vines planted from 1979- 1998. The vines are double Guyot trained at a density of 4,240 vines per hectare and have an average age of 25 years.
The vintage was characterised by fairly high temperatures and healthy grapes that were perfectly intact at harvest time. The ripening phase required two emergency irrigations in the upper hillside vineyards. The vineyards also benefited from the timely rainfall on 20th August, which helped maintain the physiological balance of the vines, resulting in the complete aromatic and phenolic ripening of the grapes. The absence of rain, except on two days, during the harvest period meant that the work was carried out easily and almost without interruption. The forecast is that vintage 2015 wines will be complex and long-lived, characterised by slightly above average alcohol content and a good balance between acidity and extract.
The grapes were harvested in the first half of September, and destemming and crushing followed. Fermentation took place at temperatures between 20-28°C. Maceration lasted for 15 days during which time pumping over took place daily. Malolactic fermentation took place naturally in October in barriques. The wine was aged for 16 months before being blended and spent a further two months in tank before bottling. The wine was then matured in bottle for 10 months before release.
La Grola is a full bodied, intense and elegant wine. Dark ruby red in colour, it has a wide, embracing bouquet with notes of wild berries, juniper, tobacco and coffee essence. The high plant density and resulting low yields give this wine its unique concentration.