2004 Mithas Amarone della Valpolicella, Corte Sant'Alda, Veneto

2004 Mithas Amarone della Valpolicella, Corte Sant'Alda, Veneto

Product: 20048032645
Prices start from £440.00 per case Buying options
2004 Mithas Amarone della Valpolicella, Corte Sant'Alda, Veneto

Description

Marinella's finest wine, drawn predominantly from the single 'Macie' vineyard, fermented in large oak and aged for three years in 1500 litre french oak, the stunning 2004 shows both richness as well as precision. The nose evokes a rich brew of rum and raisin chocolate, and of herbs, while the palate is stunningly pure as well as decadent, seductively textured, finely wrapped for another 10 years ageing, so best drunk from 2010 till 2020. Try with goose.
(David Berry Green)

A beguiling nose of baked brioche and dried fruits (freshly made rum babas come to mind.) An impressive, rich palate follows brimming with notes of fennel, liquorice, prunes and bitter chocolate. A simply delightful, lingering finish dominated by smoky morello cherry and sweet cinnamon spice. Try it with a rare venison steak at dinner and you’ll sleep very well.
(Nicola Gilbert - London Shop Sales - 25 Jan 2010)
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6 x 75cl bottle
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About this WINE

Corte Sant'Alda, Veneto

Corte Sant'Alda, Veneto

Corte Sant' Alda is fast becoming one of the top-flight producers of Valpolicella and Amarone. It is owned by Marinella Camerani and is named after her daughter, Alda. Marinella has 15 hectares of certified organic vineyards located in the foothills of the Lessini Mountains, near the town of Mezzane, about 30km north-east of Verona.

The winery is situated in an old farm building in the centre of the vineyards. The wines are all made from the classic Valpolicella blend of Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara - the vines average about 25 years of age and the grapes are all hand-harvested. Since 2000 the wines have been fermented in large French oak fermenters using only use wild yeasts to increase their individuality. The wines are then aged in a variety of barrel sizes, made from both oak and cherry wood.

The Mithas name is reserved for the very finest wines produced by Marinella. The Mithas wines all come from fruit from the superior, two hectare, "Macie" vineyard which is rich in humus. They all have extraordinary concentration and complexity and rival the best wines produced in the Veneto. Recently Marinella has replanted 30% of her vineyards with "Albero", stake trellissed vines, to further improve the quality of the wines. She is also in the process of making the Macie vineyard biodynamic and to that end she has recently bought twin, rare breed Alpine cows, named "Rosa" and "Roma", to work on the estate.

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Amarone della Valpolicella

Amarone della Valpolicella

Amarone della Valpollicella, a leading Venetian wine DOC, now represents 25% of the total production of Valpolicella wine. Amarone della Valpolicella (normally known more snappily as "Amarone") is made using partially shrivelled fruit that has been left to dry, and produces a rich, full-bodied, unfortified, dry red wine. 

Amarone's sweeter sibling Recioto della Valpolicella can trace its history back to the Romans, when Pliny, Virgil and Columella made reference to a wine called "Recitium", however, Amarone was not seen until it was first sold in 1936 and was only officially recognised in 1953. Its birth was apparently the result of a producer forgetting to take his Recioto out of barrel, allowing it to ferment to dryness.

Located between Lake Garda and Venice, the Amarone zone is concentrated around the villages of Negrar, Fumane, Marano, Sant Ambroglio and San Pietro-in-Cariano. Its vines grow on stony, volcanic, calcareous sites in the foothills of the Lessini Mountains at between 150m and 350m above sea level. With Lake Garda and the Adriatic Sea nearby, the region's climate is relatively temperate although the proximity of the Alps brings with it the constant threat of hail (as occurred in 2007).

Corvina (aka Veronese) and Corvinone must constitute 80% of the blend, with Rondinella, Molinara and Croatina accounting for the remaining 20%. Once harvested, the clean fruit is traditionally dried in airy lofts for 100-120 days over the winter, a process known as "appassimento". This typically results in an increase of sugar by 27% and dry extract by 28% while malic acid levels reduce by 66% with tartaric acid levels remaining the same. Importantly, evaporation leads to a 65% reduction in must weight (although this is less in modern purpose-built "lofts") aided and abetted by the development of noble rot (aka "botrytis cinerea"). The desiccated fruit is pressed in the March following the October harvest and fermented in Slavonian or French oak. 

It is then aged for up to 7 years (as is the case for the wines of Giuseppe Quintarelli). The left-over grape pomace is recycled, with Valpolicella Classicopassed through it to produce Valpolicella Ripasso. The legal minimum alcohol level for Amarone is 14% but most easily surpass 15%. The best wines are dense and richly textured - reminiscent of Vintage Port but drier and without the fortification! - with lively acidity, supple tannins and lovely flavours of Morello cherry, roast coffee and chocolate.

Recommended producers: Bussola, Corte Sant' Alda, Dal Forno and Giuseppe Quintarelli.

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Corvina, Corvinone blend

Corvina, Corvinone blend

Corvina is widely grown on the Veneto shore of Lake Garda and the hills of Valpolicella to the north and north-east of Verona. Sometimes known as Corvina Veronese, it is blended with Rondinella and Molinara to produce Valpolicella and Bardolino. It can be a tricky grape to cultivate, as it ripens late and is prone to rot if affected by rains at harvest time. It is a high-yielding grape and quality is very dependent on keeping yields low.

Corvina-based red wines can range in style from a light, cherryish red to the rich, port-like Recioto and Amarone Valpolicellas. Most Valpolicella from the plains is pale and insipid, and bears little comparison with Valpolicella Classico from the hills. Some producers such as Allegrini are now producing very high quality 100% Corvina wines.

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Reviews

Customer reviews

Wine Advocate91/100
jancisrobinson.com18/20
Robert Parker93/100

Critic reviews

Wine Advocate91/100
The 2004 Amarone della Valpolicella is a sumptuous, richly-textured wine imbued with notable class in its layers of ripe dark fruit. Despite its depth and richness, the wine shows notable clarity. The style is quite concentrated but the level of sweetness is restrained. Pretty notes of cocoa, espresso and tobacco linger on the long finish. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2014.
Antonio Galloni - 30/10/2008 Read more
jancisrobinson.com18/20
The scent of blueberries and cranberries, then a thick dark chocolate richness and tea leaves. A sumptuously indulgent wine, raisins and dates steeped in tea. Wonderfully masculine swashbuckling tannins. But they make a perfect framework for the baked dates, the figs, the long lingering velvety finish.
(Tamlyn Currin - jancisrobinson.com - 25 Mar 2010) Read more
Robert Parker93/100
The estate’s top of the line 2004 Amarone della Valpolicella Mithas is another explosive, full-throttle wine. Still quite primary, this powerful Amarone exudes masses of dark fruit intermingled with mint, smoke and sweet French oak. Today the wine remains incredibly tightly wound, but there is notable opulence, and the only thing this Amarone needs is a few years in bottle which will allow its inner sweetness to emerge.
(Antonio Galloni - Wine Advocate - Oct 2008) Read more