Masi Costasera Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOCG 2017, Veneto,Italy

Costasera’s slopes face the sunset, making this the best terroir for producing high-quality Amarone in Valpolicella Classico. With a longer day, vines that face Lake Garda bask in reflected light, receiving more sunlight, with soft breezes. Since the 1960s, Masi experts have confirmed the superiority of west-facing sites. To produce this unique Amarone, Masi combines ancient varieties (Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara) and winemaking methods (vinifying grapes semi-dried on racks for 3-4 months) with the latest techniques: bamboo racks in temperature- and humidity-controlled conditions induce natural drying; selective exposure to botrytis cinerea (‘noble rot’); strictly-controlled fermentations through the use of Saccharomyces bayanus, a rare yeast that produces high alcohol. Aged for 24 months, 80% in 40-80 hectoliter Slavonian oak barrels and 20% in small Allier and Slavonian oak barrels (40% new, 30% 1 year old, 30% 2 year old) before a minimum 4 months in bottle. This deep ruby-red wine has powerful, complex aromas of dried plums and balsamic (anise, fennel, mint) traces. Quite dry (not sweet) on the palate, soft and with bright acidity, the wine shows flavors of baked cherry, chocolate and cinnamon. Structured but noble, delicate tannins precede a long finish.