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Degani - Valpolicella Classico Superiore Ripasso "Cicilio" DOC, Italy (2020)

Degani - Valpolicella Classico Superiore Ripasso "Cicilio" DOC, Italy (2020)

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Deep ruby colour, with rich fruit –  dark cherry, raspberry and plum – along with sage, a slight herbaceousness and spicy, mocha notes. A lovely fresh acidity balances the ripeness and succulent palate along with integrated tannins making this a dry (just...), medium-bodied, and balanced Ripasso.

REGION Italy > Valpolicella
GRAPE(S) 40% Corvina, 30% Rondinella, 25% Corvinone, 10% Molinara
FORMAT 750ml Bottle
ABV 14%
FEATURES Low Intervention, Biodynamic, Vegan-Friendly
SCALE Dry (residual sugar 11g/L, but off-set by high acidity).

“Cicilio” (pronounced che-chee-leo) is a blend made using the traditional Ripasso method. Ripasso literally means “passed over again” and is a technique whereby the unpressed skins used for Amarone della Valpolicella are added to fermented Valpolicella thus adding more body to the wine and giving it fuller, richer, dried fruit aromas and flavours.

Cicilio is also a Superiore wine, and means the wine is slightly higher in alcohol and has been aged longer than regular Valpolicella. 

The grapes are softly crushed while removing the stalks. The must macerates for 12 days, with manual punching down the cap at regular intervals (20 minutes, 3 times daily). Once the fermentation is complete, the wine is stored in stainless steel tanks until February when it is poured over the lees of the Amarone grapes, and left in contact with the lees for 15 days at a temperature of 15° C. The wine is then transferred to small French-oak barrels for 24 months, before bottling. 

Located in Valgatara in the heart of the Valpolicella Classico region, brothers Aldo and Luca Degani are a generation of growers running a small, dynamic winery in their simple cellar. Founded in 1970, the winery produces only 5 wines; approximately 40,000 bottles annually. Year over year, their adherence to the local traditions demonstrates that quality depends primarily on what nature provides.

According to Gambero Rosso, one of the major wine publications in Italy, “they amaze us by regularly turning out great results, vintage after vintage. Wines of high quality and lashings of personality.” 

The Degani brothers own 6 hectares of vineyards in Marano and Fumane, in the heart of the Classico region, re-planted over 25 years ago. The vineyards are between 150-180 metres above sea level, with rows running north-south for maximum sun exposure. La Rosta is a special part of the vineyard holdings, which provides even riper grapes in top vintages.

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