Preview of the 2013 Amarone. The future of the designation
It has just been released onto the market, judged by the commission of the Consortium as a medium-high quality vintage. But to get a more precise idea of the 2013 Amarone, the wine professionals came together at the preview organised by the Consortium for the Protection of Valpolicella wines. The event, with an ever higher attendance from the public of wine lovers, took place this year from Saturday 28th to Monday 30th January at the Gran Guardia Palace in Verona.
Between the present and future of Amarone
It was a chance to taste the latest Amarone wines from the 78 wineries taking part, which as well as the 2013, also brought some older wines with them (over 150 in total). But it was also to take stock of the whole production context, looking towards the future of the designation, starting from the integrated production protocol “Riduci Risparmia Rispetta” or RRR (Reduce, Save, Respect), launched 5 years ago by the Consortium and certified by Siquria since the 2016 vintage.
The 2013 vintage in Valpolicella
The assessment commission, brought together by the Protection Consortium a few weeks ago, defined the 2013 vintage as “medium-high quality”. The vintage will be remembered “for the absolute climatic divergence between the first and second plant cycle phases, coinciding with ripening.” Frequent rainfall and low temperatures in the first half of the year, which gave way to scorching dry weather in June, subjecting the vines to “opposite and extreme metabolic regimes.”
The 2013 Amarone, born from an extreme climate
It may not have been a simple vintage, but it was certainly an interesting one. “Water stress in the pre-veraison stage stimulated an intense activity of anthocyanic, polyphenolic and tannic synthesis,” while the hot dry climate during the ripening phase gave “healthier and riper grapes, rich in sugars.” The imprint of the territory can be perceived according to the production areas, ranging from the “great fruity elegance” of the Mezzane, Illasi and Cazano wines, to the “delicate nose and balance” of the wines produced in Fumane, to the “assertive elegance and power” of Negrar, without considering the differences in style.
RRR: “Riduci Risparmia Rispetta” (Reduce, Save, Respect)
The Reduce, Save, Respect protocol is an “area certification” which, together with the production process in the vineyard and cellar, involves the whole of the territory, in safeguarding the landscape, ecosystem, biodiversity, resource management. Crea-Viticoltura Enologia in Conegliano (Treviso) looked after the scientific side of the project. “During the first year, the project involved 30 wineries and 500 hectares, but the aim is to manage to certify 60% of the vineyard surface area in the next two years. This is a very important aim for us, which is only being tackled by Austria in Europe,” explained Olga Bussinello, director of the Consortium. The RRR brand could be put on the bottles from the 2016 vintage.
The value of Amarone has increased. Wine Monitor – Nomisma data
Exports play a key role in the Amarone market. They are worth about 65% of the bottled product, with an increase of 3% in value in 2016 (compared to 2015), recorded by Wine Monitor – Nomisma. Germany (18%), United States (11%) and Switzerland (11%) are the main markets (together they cover about 40% of the bottles exported). Then come United Kingdom (10%), Canada (7%) and Sweden (7%), while the Far East maintains a marginal role. Also the value in the domestic market has increased (up 10% in 2016 compared to 2015, even the mass retail market has gone up by 18.5%): which is a significant figure given the static national context.
Each public to its own preview
One of the novelties of the 2013 Amarone Preview was the dividing up of the public into three different days (28th January dedicated to the press, 29th to wine enthusiasts and 30th to workers in the sector) which enabled the almost 2,800 visitors to be distributed more efficiently. With 2,000 wine lovers, 235 Italian and foreign journalists (from 16 countries: Australia, Austria, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Kazakhstan, Holland, Poland, United Kingdom, Russia, Spain, United States and Switzerland) and a further 300 wine professionals, this edition confirmed yet again the success of the event.