This is another strong showing from Pieropan, one of the reference-point producer for the wines of Soave."
Pieropan Recioto Di Soave Colombare 2004
Fruit Wine from Veneto, Italy
This dessert wine is obtained from the shrivelled "recie" ("ears" in the venetian dialect) of choice Garganega grapes, the top part of each bunch, with the ripest and best exposed berries. The bunches are laid out on traditional straw mats, in well aired room for few months.
In early spring, the semi-dried grapes are pressed, and the resulting wine is aged in oak barrels for two years. Intense gold, almost amber coloured, delicately reminiscent of exotic fruit and apricots on the nose, its initial impression on the palate is delicately sweet, a prelude to pleasing and unexpected aromatic complexity.
Excellent on its own or at the end of a meal, to accompany almond pastries, blue cheese such as gorgonzola, or mature cheeses.
The Wine Advocate - "The 2004 Recioto di Soave Le Colombare is Garganega that is air-dried for several months prior to being vinified and then aged in French oak. This sumptuous dessert wine flows from the glass with honey, flowers, dried figs, apricots, candied orange peel and a multitude of aromas and flavors that engage the senses in stunning style. Le Colombare is a great wine to match with cheeses. Anticipated maturity: 2008-2014.
Wine & Spirits - "Made from garganega grapes that are air dried then fermented and aged in oak for two years, this is beguiling in its rich balance of savory and sweet, a compelling, intensely structured dessert wine. Initial flavors or smoked apple and spiced plum shift with air, becoming white peach and apricot, with an edge of minerality. The best part is the finish, which feels like it could last forever."
Wine Enthusiast - "Beautiful and luminous, this amber-colored Recioto di Soave is generous and opulent. Its many aromatic layers include apricot, honey, toasted almond and butterscotch. It has rich sweetness and enough tingling acidity to tickle your tongue and keep the palate refreshed. "
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Enclosed by the original town walls and dominated by its medieval fortress, Soave has a peaceful, timeless quality about it. In the heart of the old town is the winery of Leonildo and Teresita Pieropan, which goes back to 1860. The present Leonildo ("Nino")'s grandfather, Leonildo Senior, founded the estate and 'invented' Recioto di Soave, a concentrated dessert wine applying a system similar to Tuscany's governo to the indigenous, white Garganega grape.
Today, the estate's 74 acres under vine include three single vineyards, all within the historical backbone of the Soave appellation (Soave Classico): Calvarino, La Rocca and Le Colombare. Terrain is respectively clayey/basaltic, calcareous/clayey, and clayey/marly/tuffaceous, yielding small crops of highly concentrated Garganega and Trebbiano grapes. The range is crafted by Leonildo himself, whose wine-making genius, constant research and innovative methods have carved a unique niche for these exceptional, extract-full and long-living whites that go far, far beyond their own appellation. View all Pieropan Wines
About VenetoView a map of Veneto wineries (vey-NEH-toe)
Notable FactsThe wine of Soave is most common white wine made here. Occasionally you can find an exceptional Soave, but for the most part the wine is easy-drinking and refreshingly pleasant. For the reds, the most popular are Amarone and Valpolicella – both made primarily from the good structured Corvina grape. While Amarone is always made in the recioto method (drying out the grapes to intensify the flavor), Valpolicella has a few different levels. Amarone is made from very ripe grapes, which are then dried and then pressed, producing an opulent, concentrated, full-bodied wine that has a distinctive and powerful taste that stays with you. Not for the lighter fare meal, this wine is almost port-like and delicious with cheese and/or dessert. Valpolicella can also be made in the recioto method, but it's more often found in a dry style – the wine goes up in rank, from Valpolicella to Valpolicella Classico to Valpolicella Classico Superiore. And finally, the bubbly of Veneto – Prosecco. Made from the same-named grape, Prosecco is less fizzy than Champagne and occasionally has a slight sweetness. It's absolutely delicious as a value aperitif.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.
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