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Giuseppe Rizzardi presents Amarone masterclass 19/12/2016

Giuseppe Rizzardi presents Amarone masterclass

Giuseppe Rizzardi, owner and winemaker of the famed Veneto producer Guerrieri Rizzardi visited Malta to conduct an extraordinary masterclass at Farsonsdirect’s The Wine Shop which involved a comparative tasting of his Amarones ‘Villa Rizzardi’ and ‘Calcarole’ across three vintages.

Guerrieri Rizzardi is a result of the union between two ancient Veronese wine producers of substance: the Counts Guerrieri, owners of a centuries-old estate with vineyards and cellars in Bardolino, and the Counts Rizzardi, who acquired their vineyards in Negrar back in 1649, building the historic cellar of Pojega shortly thereafter. In 1913 the two families came together through marriage and Guerrieri Rizzardi was formed, launching their first label in 1914.

Amarone is a traditional and unique method of wine making crafted only from Valpolicella grown grapes which are naturally dried in boxes and then pressed and fermented. Amarone wines are higher in alcohol due to fermentation of the dried grapes and not from the addition of alcohol.

The grapes for the Amarone Classico della Valpolicella DOCG ‘Villa Rizzardi’ come from the Pojega vineyard where the average vine age is at least 30 years.  The ‘Villa Rizzardi’ spends 36 months in mostly French oak barrels and can be cellared for many years.

The single vineyard Amarone Classico della Valpolicella DOC ‘Calcarole’ is only produced in the best vintages and in limited quantities.  Calcarole is a cru above the Villa di Rovereti in the heart of Negrar in the Valpolicella Classico area. This vineyard is ideally suited due to its particularly warm climate and stony soil and it south west aspect.  Sourced from mature vines, the grapes are harvested by hand and picked when they are at the ideal ripeness to undergo drying. The hand selected grapes are naturally dried in boxes and then fermented and pressed. ‘Calcarole’ can be also be cellared for many years.

The masterclass kicked off with Giuseppe’s Amarones ‘Villa Rizzardi’ and ‘Calcarole’ from the 2006 vintage, both winners of Due Bicchieri Rossi. The 2004 vintage followed, once again the ‘Calcarole’ was a Due Bicchieri Rossi winner whilst the ‘Villa Rizzardi’ was a Tre Bicchieri winner. The highlight of the evening was the 1998 vintage, Giuseppe’s first vintage as Guerrieri Rizzardi’s winemaker. Both Amarones won the Due Bicchieri on release.

Farsons Beverage Imports Company (FBIC) Limited proudly imports and distributes Guerrieri Rizzardi in Malta.  Available in selected restaurants, wine boutiques and Farsonsdirect’s The Wine Shop in Mriehel (www.farsonsdirect.com).