Ca la Bionda’s brilliant single vineyard Amarone, Ravazzol, is at the top of my list for hoarding. It’s an incredible wine each vintage and unsurprisingly in the fabulous 2016 vintage it comes with a huge score.
Most Amarone that comes across my desk is a poor imitation of Port …. alcoholic, blowsy, way over the top. But Alessandro Castellani’s Amarone is something different all together. It’s big wine for sure, massive even. But it is the rare Amarone that is aromatically complex, with intense aromas of blackberries, anise and Asian spices. It’s wine for the table, a powerful, blockbuster of a wine, with a dense mid-palate, loaded with dark berries with a touch of bitter dark chocolate. Finish goes forever.
“Brothers Alessandro and Nicola Castellani of Ca’ La Bionda really seem to be onto something in Valpolicella Classico, but it’s not about appassimento. In fact, the style they are working toward and the message that they are trying to communicate is one of purity and a reliance on terroir and fruit to create Valpolicella Superiore of importance. Frankly speaking, you can’t travel in winemaker circles throughout the region without hearing about the wines that are being reared in these cellars. The winery and vineyards are located in Marano di Valpolicella within the Classico zone, and while this family continues to produce traditional Amarone, Ripasso and Recioto, Alessandro Castellani believes that the category of Valpolicella Superiore is what will prove the worth of the region. What’s more, these blending’s of Corvina, Corvinone, Rondinella and Molinara are made without the use of any dried grapes or Ripasso. While most of the world thinks of Valpolicella as a fruity expression with near-term appeal, this house is instead aiming to deliver a wine with a ten-to-twenty-year life span. Simply look at the current release of the 2010 Valpolicella Classico Superiore Casalvegri Decennale, a wine that spent ten years maturing in 30-hectoliter oak cask, and yet emerges with remarkable freshness. It also pays to check out their varietal Corvina, another pure yet deep expression that tempts the imagination. Or the Bianco del Casal, an old vine blend of Garganega and Trebbiano di Soave that looks to show what can be done with these varieties outside of Soave. Having said all of that, Ca’ La Bionda also happens to be making some of the best Amarone in the region as well, in a more finessed and savory style than most, and the wine speaks for itself. Let’s just say that I’m very excited to see what the future will bring.” -Vinous
Only 4 left in stock
95+ Points, Vinous
The 2016 Amarone della Valpolicella Classico Ravazzol dazzles with a vivid and exotic mix, as crushed rocks blow off to reveal bright cherries with autumnal spices and dusty rose. Its velvety-smooth yet energetic, with tart mineral-tinged berries giving way to cocoa, tobacco and exotic spice that saturates. While sweet on the nose, this is more savory on the palate and flinty through the finale, turning lightly structured and lingering incredibly long yet pure with the prettiest of red florals. Wow; the 2016 is finessed, delicate, feminine and communicates beautiful harmony. Lose some in your cellar.
Ca la Bionda’s brilliant single vineyard Amarone, Ravazzol, is at the top of my list for hoarding.
Pair with any classic winter dish, from beef stews to roasted game or after the meal, with walnuts and aged cheeses.