Vineyards in Bardolino
From the plains of Lake Garda to the hills of Lessinia, from the inland area to the coast, the geographical variety with which the province of Verona is blessed corresponds to the wide range of prestigious wines the region offers. With this variety the gastronomy changes too. However no matter which part of the territory you choose, the Valpolicella food and wine will delight your palate, providing you with the perfect accompaniment to your Valpolicella and Bardolino holiday!
Moving northwest from the city into the Veronese plain, we enter the terrestrial paradise known as Valpollicella, a place where, partly owing to its monuments, partly its majestic nature and partly from its traditional food and wine, time seems to have stopped. In these lands the secret of the eponymous wine, Valpollicella, one of the main features of the Veneto, are kept. Visitors keen to explore its mysteries and riches can follow the Valpollocella wine route, which winds right through the Veronese plain. The cuisine of the area, with its tradition cheeses, mushrooms, vegetables and desserts, enjoys a vast range of flavours: its wines always provide the perfect accompaniment, in complete harmony with the dishes.
The Valpollicella wine route takes in many magnificent locations: S. Ambrogio di Valpolicella, Garganego, S. Pietro in Cariano, Fumane, Negrar and many more, all to be enojyed in car, by mountain bike or even on horse. Each offers the opportunity to sample the local food and wine immersed in a location where the centuries of history seem inextricably bound to the present.
The hillsides around Verona are also home to Bardolino and Lake Garda. The production of this glorious red nectar, whose quality is manifest in its DOCG certification, is focussed in the areas of Bardolino itself, with Lazise, Affi, Costermano and Garda, constituting the Bardolino wine route, a perfect blend of art, nature and taste.
Map of The VALPOLICELLA CLASSICO Wine Region
Located on the south eastern shores of Lake Garda, the classico zone surrounds the towns of Bardolino, Affi, Cavaion, Costermano, Garda and Lazise.
Beyond the classico zone to the south are flat, fertile plains where Bardoline wine is produced from high grape yields. About 45% of the production comes from the Bardolino Classico region, but unlike its neighboring Veneto DOCs – Soave and Valpolicella – there does not seem to be much terroir driven quality difference between the wine produced in the classico region and that from the greater DOC zone.
Bardolino is an Italian red wine produced along the chain of morainic hills in the province of Verona to the east of Lake Garda.
It takes its name from the town Bardolino on the shores of Lake Garda and was awarded Denominazione di origine controllata (DOC) status in 1968.
The three main grapes used to produce Bardolino are also used to produce Valpolicella but the two wines are quite different. This is partly because Bardolino generally contains less Corvina which adds body and structure and more Rondinella which has a relatively neutral flavor profile. Yields in Bardolino also tend to be higher than the 13 tons per hectare officially prescribed in DOC regulations Minor blending grapes, such as Rossignola, Barbera, Sangiovese and the white grape variety Garganega are also permitted up to 15%.
Other versions of Bardolino include a Superiore which has at least 1 extra percent of alcohol and must be aged at least a year before being released, a rosé known as Bardolino Chiaretto, a lightly sparkling frizzante and a novello.
The blend of grapes used to produce the wine includes Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara. Up to 15% of the blend may include Rossignola, Barbera, Sangiovese and/or Garganega.
Valpolicella is a viticultural zone of the province of Verona, Italy, east of Lake Garda. The hilly agricultural and marble-quarrying region of small holdings north of the Adige is famous for wine production. Valpolicella ranks just after Chianti in total Italian Denominazione di Origine Controllata (DOC) wine production.
The red wine known as Valpolicella is typically made from three grape varieties: Corvina Veronese, Rondinella, and Molinara. A variety of wine styles is produced in the area, including a recioto dessert wine and Amarone, a strong wine made from dried grapes. Most basic Valpolicellas are light, fragrant table wines produced in a nouveau style, similar to Beaujolais nouveau and released only a few weeks after harvest. Valpolicella Classico is made from grapes grown in the original Valpolicella production zone. Valpolicella Superiore is aged at least one year and has an alcohol content of at least 12 percent. Valpolicella Ripasso is a form of Valpolicella Superiore made with partially dried grape skins that have been left over from fermentation of Amarone or recioto.
Amarone is a rich, dry wine normally reaching alcohol levels of 15%, Recioto is Sweet. Once the grapes have been dried, they are crushed and fermented to dryness (but not before 1 December following the harvest). The fermentation takes a long time as the grapes lose around half of their liquid while they are being dried and are very rich in sugar. The wine is then aged in cask or, increasingly, barrique. The legal minimum alcohol for Amarone is 14% but the majority reach 15% and higher. They can taste like vintage Port but drier and without any fortification.
Recioto della Valpolicella cannot be crushed until 1 January and is then fermented. It is a sweet, unfortified wine with lots of fresh black fruit and cholocate. It usually reached an alcohol level of 12% with a high residual sugar of 250 grams/litre).
Both wines must be made from 40-80% Corvina grapes and need to be raisined in special drying lofts or drying rooms (aka appassimento) for several months after they have been picked.
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