Dal Forno VS Quintarelli Amarone Wine Tasting Friday, October 1st 7:30pm AND all the Amarone in the store on SALE!!!

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Wine hath drowned more men than the sea.

THOMAS FULLER


 


 


And if I drowned in wine, I can think of none better than Amarone!!


 


This is annual event here at the Wine Watch. We show the wines of these two producers every year at a "Once in a Lifetime" tasting event and then every other year we show them against each other.   


The styles are dramatically different between Dal Forno and Quintarelli but they both make Amarone at the top level of quality and both sacrifice quantity over quality.  They are also very expensive but the price reflects the demand for these wines in the marketplace.


Dal Forno is a bit more progressive thinking aging his wines in new French Oak and making a dryer style of Amarone by not drying the grapes for as long as Quintarelli.


Although Giuseppe Quintarelli passed away last year his wines will forever be iconic examples of this ancient style of making wine by drying the grapes before fermenting.  These wines are incredibly rare and to be opening up 6 bottles on one evening categorizes this evening as a "once in a lifetime" experience.


Join us as we experience some of the top vintages for this region and some of the most sought-after wines from the Veneto in an all out battle over who's wine reigns supreme- the godfather of Verona, Giuseppe Quintarelli or the new kid on the block, Romano Dal Forno.


Toni Lampasone will be making a special menu to accompany the wines. The fee for this "Once in a Lifetime" wine tasting event is $495 + tax for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail andy@winewatch.com


 


 



Quintarelli VS Dal Forno Amarone Wine Tasting

Friday, October 1st

7:30 pm


2017 Quintarelli Primofiore IGT


1991 Quintarelli Alzero

1993 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella

1998 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella

2006 Dal Forno Amarone Della Valpolicella

2008 Dal Forno Amarone Della Valpolicella

2009 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella

2011 Dal Forno Romano Amarone della Valpolicella

2012 Quintarelli Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico


 


2004 Quintarelli Recioto della Valpolicella

2004 Dal Forno Romano Vigna Sere (375ml)

2007 Quintarelli Amabile de Cere Bandito Passito Bianco (375 ml)


 


Menu


Selection of Cheese: St. Andre, Blue Cheese, Beemster Gouda

Hudson Valley Foie Gras Sauteed with Cherry Reduction and wilted Greens

Amarone Risotto with Reggiano Parmesan

Braised Beef Shortrib with Amarone Mole reduction

Cheesecake with Amarena Cherries and Recioto reduction


 


The price for this tasting which includes dinner is $495 + tax for reservations call 954-523-9463 or e-mail:  andy@winewatch.com.  Please let us know when you make your reservations if you have any dietary restrictions and chef Toni will be happy to accommodate you. 


 


 


A bit about Giuseppe Quintarelli - The Godfather of the Veneto


 


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Known as “The Master of the Veneto,” Giuseppe Quintarelli makes some of the world’s most sought-after wines. From aperitifs to digestifs, his limited production Amarones, Reciotos, and Valpolicellas are the benchmark for excellence. Their greatness stems from the inherent quality of the terroir and natural talent of this master, whose concept of vintage approval and strict grape selection rival great Chateau of Sauternes.  Quintarelli makes stunning wines in average vintages by hand picking everything and making severe selections- sometimes going cluster by cluster and selecting each individual berry!


Giuseppe puts his wines on the market when he deems them ready, often keeping them in the cellar for decades until the right moment arrives.  Quintarelli Produces around 2,500 cases of Valpolicella, 850 cases of Amarone and 300 cases of Recioto.  Valpolicella is a terroir with a long history.  It has weathered difficult times and has now been saved by the commitment of a large number of young producers, and the example of a great one, Guiseppe Quintarelli.  Giuseppe’s winery, situated at Negrar on the gentile Valpolicella hills, has 12 hectares of vineyards at an average altitude of 240 meters above sea level.  Some of the grapes are brought in bringing the average annual production up to 50-60,000 bottles.  In the best years, Giuseppe Quintarelli makes an Amarone Riserva, and of course 1990 was no exception.  Before release, this seriously good wine spent ten years ageing in Slavonian oak barrels.  The deep garnet hue is appealing and there are sweet cocoa powder and ripe berry fruit on the nose.  The palate is generous with plums, fruit liqueur and coffee in a harmonious, lingering profile.  The Alzero, made from raisined Cabernet Franc grapes is deep ruby red and proffers aromas of red peppers, vegetables and tobacco on the nose.  The palate has remarkable finesse and hints of cocoa, morello cherries, pepper and pencil lead create a very stylish, bitter-sweet effect.  The fresh-tasting nicely rounded Valpolicella has hints of aromatic herbs, cherry fruit and liquorice, as well as good extract.


According to archaeological evidence vines were growing in the Valpolicella area some 40 million years ago, but winemaking probably came about around the 5th century BC somewhere that is now referred to as Fumane, the home of one of the most famous Amarone producers, Allegrini.  This wine was referred to as Retico and came from the county of Catullus, Verona.  Late in the Roman period the name Retico changed to Acinatico.    Cassiodoro, a famous Italian minister to the Ostrogoth king Theodoric, has been quoted making reference to Acinato:  “It has a pure and exceptional taste and a regal color, so that you may believe either that purple got its colour from the wine or that the wine is the epitome of purple.  Its sweetness is of incredible gentleness, its density is accompanied by an indescribable stability and it swells over the tongue in such a way that it seems either a liquid made of solid flesh or else a drink to be eaten.”


Valpolicella, according to some accounts, means “valley of many cellars,” which seems fitting.  It is derived, they say, from the Greek word poli (many) and the Latin cella (cellar).   This area is approximately 27 miles long and 5 miles wide, it passes north and west of Verona, extending from the Adige River to the Cazzano Valley.  Bardolino and Lake Garda lie to the west and Soave to the east.  The land ranges in altitude from 490 to 1,475 feet above sea level.  The vines in the classico district to the northwest of Verona, are planted on the hillsides and mountain slopes of the valleys of the Adige tributaries and the Fumane, Marano, and Negrar torrents.  Some of the vineyards are terraced with stone.  The cretaceous, calcareous soil is of glacial origins.  And volcanic activity in this area contributed elements to the soil as well.  


The area around Sant’Ambrogio is considered the heart of the Amarone production zone.  Within this area, northeast of Gargagnago, is a valley called Vaio Armaron, which may have given the wine its name.   The blend of grapes typically used in Valpolicella is Corvina (40%-70%), Rondinella (20%-40%), Molinara (5%-25%) and may contain up to 15% Negrara Trentina, Rossignola, Dindarella, Barbera, and/or Sangiovese.  Before 1989 producers were allowed to add as much as 15% of grapes, must, or wine from outside the zone to correct problems from a weak vintage, but this practice is prohibited today.  Corvina contributes color, body, bouquet, flavor, and the basic Valpolicella character to the wine.   Rondinella, which is resistant to disease and rot, is added for its color and strength, tannin and vigor, it also adds some refinement to the azromas.  Molinara, or Mulinara, is also known as Rossara Veronese and Rossanella, is blended in to make the wine lighter and more drinkable.  It also contributes dryness and acidity, as well as that characteristic bitterness.  Negrara, adds softness, freshness and early drinkability.


The first dry Amarone, according to writer Cesare Marchi, was the result of a fortunate accident.  In the early 1950s, Adelino Lucchese, Bertani’s cellarmaster, discovered a barrel of wine in the cellar that had been overlooked and neglected for some time.  Certain that it had spoiled he was about to discard its contents, when curiosity prompted him to take a taste just to see what had happened.  He was astonished to discover that the forgotten wine had a velvety texture and a penetrating perfume, a slightly bitter taste, but not at all unpleasant.  There is however evidence that the Romans made a type of bitter Recioto for diabetics or other people who couldn’t take sugar.  Sandro Boscaini of Masi pointed out that some of the oldest families in Valpolicella, the Count Campostrini and Count Serego Alighieri, as well as his own produced an Amaro, a dry Recioto.  This would seem to indicate that Amarone is considerably older that Marchi admits.  According to another book called Valpolicella Spolendida Contea Dei Vino, written by Lamberto Paronetto, the name Amarone has been in use since the eighteenth century.  It became popular at the beginning of this century and the name could very well be derived from the Italian word amaro, meaning “bitter” (scholar Scipione Maffei, writing in the first half of the eighteenth century, refers to an amaro, a dry wine from the Valpolicella area), or it could come from Vajo Armaron, where some highly regarded Amarones have been produced for ages. 


 


All of the Quintarelli Wines in the store:


 


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2017 Quintarelli Primofiore IGT

Price: $78.00       Your Price: $68.64            Quantity in Stock: 3


 


Primofiore, or “first flower,” is the youngest Quintarelli wine to be released each year. It shows a perfect balance between the fresher notes of the Cabernets and the juicier and denser nuances of the local grapes, Corvina and Corvinone. It is eminently drinkable—you will be tempted to empty the bottle as soon as you open it, but remember, be patient and let the wine show you its many faces. —Caterina Brault


See the source image


 


2010 Quintarelli Rosso del Bepi MAGNUM

Price: $525.00    Your Price: $462.00          Quantity in Stock: 4


Since Giuseppe demands absolute top quality, he labels his Amarones only in exceptional vintages; in lesser vintages he refuses to produce any Amarone at all; but in fair years he declassifies it, giving it an IGT appellation and calling it Rosso del Bepi, as in 1996, 1999 and 2002. Forward, delicious, and already becoming a cellar addition for many collectors. Made from the classic Amarone formula of Corvina, Rondinella, with Cabernet, Nebbiolo, Croatina, traces of Molinara and Negrara.


 


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1993 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $750.00    Sale Price: $625.00           Quantity in Stock: 6


1998 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $499.00    Your Price: $439.12          Quantity in Stock: 1


2009 Quintarelli Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $450.00    Your Price: $396.00          Quantity in Stock: 5


This is one of the hardest wines to come by from Italy. This wine comes primarily from the indigenous Corvina, as well as Rondinella with a small percentage of Molinara with traces of Cabernet, Sangiovese, and Nebbiolo. A truly stunning wine with great potential for long-term aging, but is tremendously rewarding to drink right now, but I would caution you to finish with this wine as it is hard to follow this wine with anything else.


Wine Watch Review:  Green tea, mint, sundried cherry and plum fruit with an array of dried flowers, dark coco and cigar box spices, milk chocolate.  Smooth and polished on the nose with layers of spice and great freshness through the finish.  This wine seems light on the palate but has sweet fruit and layers of exotic spices and that cigar box spice from the nose showing through the finish.  This is the current release from the master and although he releases the wines when they are ready to drink this wine will last 20 years or more in your cellar.  Finish 50+  Most Excellent


 


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2009 Quintarelli Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico Riserva

Price: $795.00    Your Price: $699.60          Quantity in Stock: 1


There are only a few hundred cases of the Riserva Amarone produced every year and this is the wine that I made a pilgrimage to the winery to get and they would only well me one bottle of the 1989 and one bottle of the 1990!  I cashed in all my dollars to make this purchase as they don't take American Express at Quintarelli Winery.  Luckily, I found someone to loan me cab fair to get to the airport the following day.  This is a selection of the finest lots and this wine is not made every year when it is it is magical! 


Wine Watch Review: This is like the Amarone on steroids!! Only made in excellent vintages and there are but a few hundred cases available for the world, this wine has a stunning array of sweet sundried fruits, tobacco and mocha, Christmas cake spices and more.  Wow an explosion of flavors on the tongue with a host of sweet viscous sundried fruits prunes, cherries, strawberry marmalade, very complex with tobacco and spice notes as well as some tannins here at the end, this wine needs another decade or more in the bottle and needs to be tasted to be believed!!  Finish 55+ KILLER


 


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Alzero is a massive--and massively delicious--wine. Quintarelli makes it only in the very best years, solely from fruit derived from old vines, predominately Cabernet Franc, usually blended with Cabernet Sauvignon and a small percentage of Merlot. As in the estate’s Amarone, Quintarelli treats Alzero’s grapes with the appassimento technique, drying the grapes in single layers upon straw or plastic mats for 60 to 100 days to concentrate and intensify the flavor; it’s also the sole Quintarelli wine that’s aged in barriques.


 


1991 Quintarelli Alzero

Price: $1000.00  Your Price: $880.00          Quantity in Stock: 2


1994 Quintarelli Alzero 3 Liter

Price: $3100.00  Your Price: $2728.00        Quantity in Stock: 1


 


The Dessert wines from Quintarelli – The Rarest of the magical elixirs from this legendary producer


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For 100 years this small producer from the Veneto has been exporting limited quantities to the U.S. The absolute traditionalist has not changed the techniques set by his father. As those who are familiar with Quintarelli know, he creates miracles in off vintages and legends when Mother Nature shines - and in 1990, 1993 and 1995 she did just that, rivaling her efforts of 1990 and perhaps 1976 or 1985. For Giuseppe, like his father, the challenge of Recioto is a labor of love. After arrested fermentation, which provides Recioto's distinctive sweetness, this wine's vinification follows the same pattern as for the Amarone.


 


1993 Quintarelli Recioto Della Valpolicella

Price: $600.00    Sale Price: $475.00           Quantity in Stock: 2


2004 Quintarelli Recioto della Valpolicella

Price: $450.00    Your Price: $396.00          Quantity in Stock: 3


2004 Quintarelli Recioto della Valpolicella (375ml)

Price: $208.25    Your Price: $183.26          Quantity in Stock: 6


2007 Quintarelli Recioto della Valpolicella 375ml

Price: $215.50    Your Price: $189.64          Quantity in Stock: 10


2007 Quintarelli Recioto della Valpolicella 750ml

Price: $416.25    Sale Price: $366.30           Quantity in Stock: 4


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2007 Quintarelli Amabile de Cere Bandito Passito Bianco (375 ml)

Price: $302.50    Your Price: $266.20          Quantity in Stock: 5


Toffee, caramel, dates, figs, brown spice, very complex bouquet with incredible complexity with more spice and fruit coming out as the wine opens, coffee, dried apricots, clove and more.  Thick and unctuous on the tongue with wonderful intensity of fruit, dates, raisins and apricot with an array of spice and a firm hand of acidity holding things in place, this wine has a ton of sweetness but is balanced by intense acidity and it seems this wine will last a lifetime or two!!  Finish 50+                KILLER


A bit about Romano Dal Forno


 


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A few years ago the last day of the Vinitaly we left early to go see one of the producers that does not show his wines at the fair- Romano Dal Forno.   We just happened to be doing a tasting with this producers wine in a few weeks after my return, so I was anxious to learn more about this producer from the horse’s mouth.


Although Romano’s wines have become some of the most sought after in all of Italy, there are not many people that know a lot about them, many people believe that he was a pupil of the great Giuseppe Quintarelli.  Well it is true that Dal Forno is a good friend of Quintarelli and that it was Giuseppe’s passion for winemaking that inspired Romano to get into the wine business, however he never worked for Quintarelli like so many wine experts have claimed.  Romano’s family had been land owners in Valpolicella for several generations and they owned vineyards, but they had always sold their grapes to other producers.  Romano never went to enology school, he is a self taught winemaker, his first vintage was 1983 and over the course of the next few he quickly became one of the rising stars of this area. 


His approach to making Amarone is very different from Quintarelli and collectors usually will like one or the other rather than both.  Quintarelli dries his grapes for upwards of six months before crushing them.  This causes the resulting wines to be rather sweet in style.  Romano prefers the taste of dryer wines so he only leaves his grapes to dry for one to two months, thus the resulting wines are fairly dry in style.


When you walk down to the cellar, the stairs are made of white marble tile that has been tumbled so that the surface is not slippery, everything that Romano does is well thought out, he is a perfectionist and it shows in his cellar and in his wines.  The brick work on the ceilings of the cellar is a mosaic and really makes the cellar one of the most attractive that you will encounter.  The barrles are stained in the centers so you will not notice the drippings from topping off.  It seems like every little detail has been thought out.


His greatest recent vintages are:  1996, 1997, 1998, 2001, and the 2004 which is still in barrique.  The Valpolicella is one of the most concentrated and rich that you will encounter and is rich enough that it could be mistaken for Amarone.  The magical elixir, Recioto was declassified in 2003 because it failed the tasting panel from the DOC and will from this vintage on be simply entitled late harvest with the name of the vineyard, Vigna Sere.  There are two tests that Valpolicella, Amarone and Recioto have to pass before they are allowed to carry the DOC title.  One is a chemical analysis that measures both the sugar content and the grape varietals.  The second is a physical tasting that the DOC panel conducts to ensure that the wine resembles the style of wines that are produced in this area.  The Recioto in 2003 passed the chemical analysis but the tasting panel failed this wine for being to astringent, this may have angered Dal Forno as he stated that this wine will no longer be submitted for DOC status. 


We were like kids in a candy store during our visit as the exuberant wine producer showed us his newest wines that were still in barrique.  Romano is very passionate about his wines and you could tell that he was glad to have a group of his fans in his home to learn more about what makes this producers wines so unique.


His journey stared with the 1983 vintage and every vintage he has continued to improve his wines by making progress in the vineyard as well as developing new techniques in the winery.  He began a complete renovation and expansion of the winery in 2005 and it was completed by the end of 2007 just in time for the harvest.  One of the things that he stresses is cleanliness.  Some producers of Amarone like to have a bit of "Noble Rot" in their wines.  Romano feels that there is nothing noble about rot, therefore he goes to every extreme to ensure that there is none in his cellar.  The new facility has a series of fans to circulate the air in the cellar so there is very little moisture, which is one of the largest contributors to the formation of mold in the cellar.


Any great producer will tell you that great wine is made in the vineyard and Dal Forno is no exception to this rule.  Dal Forno spends a lot of time tending his vines and has planted several new acres of vines to increase the size of his production which now hovers at around 20,000 cases of the four wines. 


 


All the Dal Forno Wines in the store:

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2014 Dal Forno Romano Valpolicella Superiore

Price: $109.50    Your Price: $96.36


2013 Dal Forno Romano Valpolicella Superiore

Price: $109.50    Your Price: $96.36            Quantity in Stock: 2


2012 Dal Forno Romano Valpolicella Superiore

Price: $112.25    Your Price: $98.78


 


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2006 Dal Forno Amarone Della Valpolicella

Price: $461.25    Your Price: $405.90          Quantity in Stock: 2


2008 Dal Forno Amarone Della Valpolicella

Price: $396.00    Your Price: $348.48Quantity in Stock: 2


2011 Dal Forno Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $411.75    Your Price: $362.34          Quantity in Stock: 1


2012 Dal Forno Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $411.75    Your Price: $362.34          Quantity in Stock: 1


2013 Dal Forno Amarone Della Valpolicella

Price: $411.75    Your Price: $362.34


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2004 Dal Forno Romano Vigna Sere (375ml)

Price: $237.00    Your Price: $208.56          Quantity in Stock: 2


 


 


Everything that we have in the store that is Amarone


 


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2015 Brigaldara Amarone Della Valpolicella

Price: $63.50       Your Price: $55.88            Quantity in Stock: 19


2010 Brigaldara Amarone dell Valpolicella 3 LITER

Price: $389.00    Your Price: $342.32          Quantity in Stock: 1


2012 Brigaldara Amarone Della Valpolicella Case Vecie

Price: $109.00    Your Price: $95.92            Quantity in Stock: 2


2007 Brigaldara Amarone della Valpolicella Riserva San Floriano Magnum

Price: $420.00    Your Price: $369.60          Quantity in Stock: 2


1967 Bertani Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $705.00    Sale Price: $595.00           Quantity in Stock: 1


1999 Allegrini Amarone Della Valpolicella

Price: $150.00    Your Price: $132.00          Quantity in Stock: 8


2011 Corte Sant'Alda Valmezzane Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $99.00       Your Price: $87.12            Quantity in Stock: 4


2017 Corte Lenguin Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico DOCG

Price: $50.00       Your Price: $44.00            Quantity in Stock: 11


2012 Marchesi Fumanelli Amarone della Valpolicella Octavius Riserva

Price: $150.00    Your Price: $132.00          Quantity in Stock: 8


2015 Marchesi Fumanelli Amarone Valpolicella Classico

Price: $83.25       Your Price: $73.26            Quantity in Stock: 2


2014 Monte Faustino Amarone della Valpolicella

Price: $64.00       Your Price: $56.32            Quantity in Stock: 21


2013 Masi Amarone della Valpolicella Riserva Costasera

Price: $79.50       Your Price: $69.96            Quantity in Stock: 4


2015 Masi Amarone Costasera Classico

Price: $57.75       Your Price: $50.82            Quantity in Stock: 19


2009 Monte dei Ragni Amarone della Valpolicella Classico

Price: $90.00       Your Price: $79.20            Quantity in Stock: 1


2012 Musella Amarone della Valpolicella Riserva DOCG

Price: $74.25       Your Price: $65.34            Quantity in Stock: 21


2014 Musella Amarone della Valpolicella Classico DOCG

Price: $54.00       Your Price: $47.52            Quantity in Stock: 6


2005 Tommaso Bussola TB Amarone della Valpolicella Classico

Price: $190.00    Sale Price: $160.00           Quantity in Stock: 4


2009 Tommaso Bussola Amarone TB Vigneto Alto

Price: $210.00    Your Price: $184.80          Quantity in Stock: 8


2014 Tommaso Bussola Amarone Classico

Price: $71.25       Your Price: $62.70            Quantity in Stock: 25


 


Recioto- the world's greatest Dessert wine


 


1964 Bertani Recioto Valpolicella

Price: $465.00    Sale Price: $395.00           Quantity in Stock: 1




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