Monday, April 03, 2006

Rocca Alata Amarone della Valpolicella 2001

This is my first taste of Amarone, and it was certainly at the cheaper end of the scale at a penny under £10 from Tesco, however despite the reasonable price this was really not bad at all - not that I'm an expert, however it did everything that one would expect from an Italian Red, pronounced aromas of cherries and almonds lead into a soft, dry wine with plenty of acidity and a sour cherry flavour which may sound grotesque but marry it to a tomato based sauce, or something with loads of olive oil and you have a winner. Amarone is made by drying grapes on mats in barns in order to reduce the amount of water in them so that when pressed the flavours produced are more concentrated and the juice has a higher sugar level - and so a higher degree of alcohol can be produced. This won't be the last Amarone I drink although unfortunately many others are discovering it right about now too! On the other hand production has doubled over the last 5 years - which means quality is bound to have slipped as people try to make a superior wine out of inferior grapes in order to cash in on the new found popularity. My advice is to check what other people have drunk or what is recommended by other people first!

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