Saturday, April 05, 2008

Tasted at Vinitaly: La Fabriseria Valpolicella Classico Superiore

Greetings From Vinitaly!The first winery I visited was Tedeschi, whose Amarone and Valpolicella I have always liked. This year they have reclassified their La Fabriseria as a Valpolicella Classico Superiore, in doing so taking a significant step back into tradition. To begin with, the name: La Fabriseria was the council of townspeople who worked with the parish priest on parish affairs, and Antonietta, one of the current younger generation, says the people on this council, including her great grandfather, were all winemakers, and would bring a bottle to each meeting, each trying to bring the best. So meetings of La Fabriseria became opportunities to discuss wines as well, and the Tedeschi family decided to apply the name to their top wines.

This said, until this vintage what is now called La Fabriseria Valpolicella Classico Superiore contained a small percentage of Cabernet, and was therefore an IGT. Now the Cabernet is gone, and they have also made the decision to ferment the old way, with whole bunches of grapes. In other words, after a brief period of drying, the bunches are looked over and those that are unblemished go into the fermentation tank, stems and all. There is some tannic extraction from the stems, but the tannins are not harsh, and greatly increase the longevity of the wine. After fermentation, large wood.

Enough talk:

Tedeschi La Fabriseria Valpolicella Classico Superiore 2006
Deep cherry ruby with hints of almandine in the rim. Rich bouquet with ripe berry fruit supported berry fruit jam mingled with warmth, some balsamic notes, underlying sweetness and licorice root; a fellow taster also find almonds. Pleasant in a young key. On the palate it's full, with rich wild berry fruit supported by clean slightly greenish spicy tannins that have a steely velvety core, and flow into a clean bright finish with tannic underpinning. It's quite elegant, but also very, very young, and though one could drink it with rich red meats now (a crown roast comes to mind), it will richly reward those with the patience to let it age for 3'5 years, and continue to grow for at least 10.

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