Lesson #9 ITALY’S RICH RED
Italian families seldom drinks rich red wines. They keep the big hitters for weddings and other celebrations. We, however, drink rich reds all the time. It’s our default wine. But what about a compromise wine ““ the muscle without the brawn?
Ripasso is a brilliant Italian invention. Enriched Valpolicella. A red wine that feels substantial but not heavy. Vitality and earthiness partnered with nourishment. The last glass won’t knock you out. You could even entertain a second bottle.
The house of Masi are masters of Ripasso and the current 06 vintage is the best ever. Deep earthy flavours are delivered with an assured, confident feeling. You get a feeling of history as opposed to the obvious fruitiness on many of today’s wines. An invitation to put the wine with simply grilled meats, and good friends. Italian wines always invite food and company.
MASI 06 VALPOLICELLA RIPASSO “˜Campofiorin’, Veneto, Italy 155051 $17.45
Ahhhh… Campo is an old friend. I remember the backyard party where I first tasted it. Surrounded by sumac trees and english profs, I felt young and out of my depth. Someone passed me a glass of this and conversation just seemed a lot easier!
Campo may even have been the reason that I started drinking red wine… way back when. Is it really possible that was 20 years ago? Zoinks! Well, it’s nice to know that one of us has improved with age!
I definitely got the earthiness with this one. The day I bought it I tried it and found it a bit strong. The following day, I tried it was a pasta dinner and enjoyed it much more.