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Valpolicella

One of the most important and significant wine-growing areas in Italy is the Valpolicella, a hilly area that includes several municipalities in the province of Verona. This is an area with an ancient enological tradition, whose expressions were already known to the Romans and to Latin writers such as Pliny the Elder, Virgil, Martial and Svetonius. Today, from a rich variety of indigenous red grape varieties, including Corvina, Corvinone and Rondinella, red wines are produced that can take on very different styles depending on the production methods used: alongside the more typical, complex and full-bodied interpretations, in recent years young, fresh and drinkable wines have also enjoyed great success, always produced in accordance with a long and very solid territorial tradition.

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One of the most important and significant wine-growing areas in Italy is the Valpolicella, a hilly area that includes several municipalities in the province of Verona. This is an area with an ancient enological tradition, whose expressions were already known to the Romans and to Latin writers such as Pliny the Elder, Virgil, Martial and Svetonius. Today, from a rich variety of indigenous red grape varieties, including Corvina, Corvinone and Rondinella, red wines are produced that can take on very different styles depending on the production methods used: alongside the more typical, complex and full-bodied interpretations, in recent years young, fresh and drinkable wines have also enjoyed great success, always produced in accordance with a long and very solid territorial tradition.

Morphology, Boundaries and Landscape of the Valley

This hilly area, bordered by the Veronese Pre-Alps to the north and the Adige River to the south, extends over 7 municipalities covering approximately 240 square kilometres populated by vineyards, olive groves, ancient parish churches, Venetian villas and streams, locally known as 'progni'.

The northernmost area, bordering the Lessini Mountains, is mainly mountainous and used for pasture. The central area is traditionally considered the most suitable for the cultivation of vines, carried out for centuries with the help of stone terraces called 'marogne'. This is where the most famous municipalities are located, which together contribute to the definition of the Classico territory: Negrar, Marano, Fumane, Sant'Ambrogio and San Pietro in Cariano. Only in these five towns is it possible to produce Valpolicella Classico DOC. The southern offshoot of the valley, on the other hand, is flat and rich in water, bordering on the Adige river and the city of Verona and has proved to be an extraordinarily fertile area for the cultivation of vegetables and fruit trees.

In addition to the area of the same name described so far, comprising just the 7 municipalities of Sant'Anna d'Alfaedo, Fumane, Marano, Negrar, Sant'Ambrogio, San Pietro in Cariano and Pescantina, the production of Valpolicella DOC is also permitted in a confined hilly area extending mostly to the east of the valley, also within the province of Verona. This includes the restricted area of Valpantena and the municipalities of Cerro Veronese, Grezzana, Dolcè, Verona, San Martino, Lavagno, Mezzane, Illasi, Tregnago, Colognola, Cazzano, Tregnago and Montecchia.



From the Ancient Retico to the Modern Valpolicella Classico

The extraordinary potential of this territory for the production of red wines has been known since ancient times. The place name itself perhaps comes from the Latin phrase "Vallis polis cellae", meaning "valley of the many cellars". An etymology therefore that seems to confirm the importance of the production of Valpolicella wine for the history of this area.

The first settlements date back to the Stone Age, when Neanderthal men lived in caves, and continued throughout the Neolithic period, with the formation of the first villages on the hills. There is also evidence of the presence of a population of probable Etruscan descent: the Arusnati, who for a certain period, before Roman domination, fought over the territory with a population of Germanic origin who came from the north, the Reti. This name seems to have given rise to the first wine speciality of which there is historical evidence: Retico.

The fortune of Retico wine is also testified to during the Roman domination, celebrated by the greatest Latin authors and also requested by emperors. Medieval history leaves no significant enological evidence, but it is very likely that wine-growing and production was carried on by the clergy who inhabited the many parishes and churches that sprang up all over the territory, often alongside small plots of land.

The modern success of the Valpolicella Classico typology began in 1924, with the birth of the first consortium of winegrowers, which is still brilliantly active today. The first regulations that established the denomination date back to 1968, subject to subsequent modifications until today. This specification imposes the use of Corvina grapes in percentages varying between 45% and 95%, possibly replaced by Corvinone for a percentage not exceeding 50%, and Rondinella grapes between 5% and 30%. It also allows the use of other red grapes to a maximum of 15%. The production area covers 17 municipalities in the province of Verona and there are two specifications of origin: Valpolicella DOC Classico and Valpantena.



A Single Territory with Many Different Styles

Depending on the method of production, Valpolicella red wine can take on very different characteristics. For example, there are very young and fresh versions with a versatile, drinkable and modern imprint. They are suitable for accompanying aperitifs, vegetable dishes, white meats and even tasty fish cooked with spices or tomato sauce.

There are also fuller-bodied and more structured versions that are described as Superiore and possibly Ripasso. In the latter case, during the production process, the marc of Recioto or Amarone has been used, triggering a second fermentation and making the product softer, warmer, round and full-bodied. The ideal accompaniment for this type is grilled or stewed red meats, but also tasty cheeses.

On Callmewine you will find a wide selection of Valpolicella on offer for sale online at very advantageous prices. Discover the history, characteristics and peculiarities of each bottle and buy the one that suits you best at the Callmewine wine shop.