Amarone della Valpolicella is produced in the Northeastern Italian region of Veneto ftom indigenous grapes, primarily Corvina (usually the leading component in the blend) along with Rondinella and Molinara.
A terrific food wine, exhibiting a wide variety of flavors, it pairs well with a wide variety—from traditional dishes of the Veneto to more modern Asian fusion. It especially pairs well with savory dishes. Depending upon the style, aromas and flavors may include cherries, plums, raisins, dried figs, smoke, nuts, bittersweet chocolate, coffee, tar, tobacco and earth.
In pairing it with food, it is important to keep in mind the different styles of Amarone, the two main ones being traditional and modern.
The robust, sometimes oxidized character of traditional style Amarones make them especially well-suited for pairing with game, steaks, stews and ribs. These wines are complex, earthy, and ripe, revealing aromas and flavors of dried black cherry and plum. There is a sense of terroir and prominent dried fruit characteristics. Older vintages reveal oxidized notes of caramel. While the wines receive extensive barrel aging, they generally do not reveal oak aromas or flavors. They are relatively high in alcohol (16-17%), their tannins are usually unresolved and require additional years of aging. These wines are made for long aging.
The red fruit intensity and softer tannins of modern style Amarones mean they pair well with pork, veal, and poultry dishes. Modern style wines are ripe tasting but offer more fresh fruit notes and in some instances, more outstanding balance and elegance than the traditional styles of Amarone. Their aromas combine dried fruit and toasted oak with some hints of vanilla and or coconut. Modern style Amarones exhibit high alcohol levels like the traditional wines but can also reveal bold concentrated flavors extracted from long macerations and hints of sweetness from residual sugar and alcohol. They also exhibit a soft texture, silky fine-grained tannins and a persistent finish.
All Amarones work well with big flavored cheeses. Try Parmigiano Reggiano, Cimbro, Monte Veronese Ubriaco, and Pecorino Vecchio. Also, try aged Gouda and blue cheeses like Gorgonzola, Stilton, Roquefort and Danish Blue. Simply out, Amarone is a robust wine that is perfect with heartier meals fare over the course of 7 to 15 years.
The following six wines can be found at Circus Wines/Spirits Unlimited in Red Bank, Middletown or Sea Girt.
San Rustico Amarone della Valpolicella Vigneti del Gaso 2006
This wine was selected as one of Wine Enthusiast’s TOP 100 WINES for 2015. It’s easy to see why.
This 93-point blend of Corvina, Rondinella and Corvinone is etheral. It offers up scents of almond and cherry. The flavors are typicaly bitter, yet, soft and velvety. A full-bodied wine, it is an ideal wine to be savored in front of a warm fire, preferably in large balloon glasses and uncork the bottle a few hours before you plan to drink it.
Price:$49.99 in mixed case $44.99
BN#533871 – SKU 16098
Tezza Amarone della Valpolicella Corte Majoli 2011
Distinctly rich, this red wine is like no other in the world: high in alcohol with intense flavors and aromatics.
The beauty of Amarone is found in the painstaking effort that goes into producing each bottle. This balanced and elegant full-bodied deep ruby red wine oozes with vibrant fragrances of currants, blackberries, dark cherries, prune, spice, cola and Spanish cedar. There are also clean notes of sweet almonds and vanilla. Warm and rich, with polished silky tannins and a long finish.
Price: $33.99 in mixed case $30.59
SKU 19231- BN#578983
Cesari Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2011
Made from 75% Corvina, 20% Rondinella and 5% Molinara, the bouquet of Cesari’s flagship wine is marked by cherry and prune aromas and jammy notes. Toasted nuances and hints of vanilla follow in this full, warm, harmonious red. A long and persistent finish is defined by bold tannins that elegantly coat the palate.
Produced from dried grapes cultivated in the historic Classico area of the appellation, Cesari Amarone is extensively aged in a combination of French and Slavonian oak barrels for a total of three years following fermentation in stainless steel tanks.
Price:$44.99 in mixed case $40.49
SKU 23089 – BN#574289
Cesari Amarone della Valpolicella Il Bosco 2009
A single-vineyard Amarone, the Il Bosco vineyard is nestled in the heart of Valpolicella Classico. Made from 80% Corvina and 20% Rondinella, the wine is rich with concentrated flavors of preserved fruit, particularly cherries.
Aged in a combination of French and Slavonian oak barrels for two-plus years, then bottled for an additional year or so, the bouquet is layered with hints of baking spices, cocoa, and toasted nuts through the long finish.
A unique and complex production process renders a wine with similar characteristics. Hand-selected grapes are dried prior to vinification in stainless steel tanks. A solid amarone. Lots of dried fruits, raisins & shoe leather.
Price:$65.99 in mixed case $59.39
SKU 00890 – BN#578178
Terre Antiche Amarone Della Valpolicella 2012
A killer value from an under-the-radar producer. This wine is an intense, deep garnet red color. Complex aromas of spiced plums, cherry and a hint of raspberry. Soft, velvety, yet full-bodied with a lingering aftertaste. Excellent with most red meats, game, and with hard-textured, mature cheese.
Price:$22.99 in mixed case $20.69
SKU 03637 – BN#575971
Tommasi Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2012
A deep ruby red blend of 50% Corvina Veronese, 15% Corvinone, 30% Rondinella and 5% Oseleta.
Warm, ripe on the nose, intense and refined. This complex, smooth, full-bodied wine offers up flavors full of cherry and plum.Serve on special occasions or sip it as an ideal companion to enjoyable conversation.
Price:$64.99 in mixed case $58.49
SKU 22616 – BN#579467