The Allegrini family's south-east facing vineyards are located in the Valpolicella Classico hills at 180-280 metres above sea level. The varied soils are mostly chalk and clay and are well-drained. The older vines are 30 years old on average, pergola trentina-trained, with about 3,000 vines per hectare. Newer vines are single Guyot trained with about 5,000 vines per hectare.
Spring saw more rainfall than usual, which meant careful work had to be undertaken in the vineyard to protect the vines. The second half of June gave way to fine weather that continued throughout the summer months, with temperatures not exceeding 35°C. Marked differences in daytime and night-time temperatures, in particular during veraison, combined with the considerable water reserves accumulated during spring, resulted in an increase in sugar concentration, helped to maintain acidity, and facilitated the development of the specific flavour characteristics of each variety. Finally, a ‘slow’ harvest in ideal weather conditions allowed the grapes to achieve perfect ripening at a gradual pace. Vintage 2016 promises to be one of the best years ever, outstanding for its great balance and elegance.
The grapes were dried at 'Terre di Fumane', a state of the art drying centre with controlled temperature and humidity. Under these conditions, the development of botrytis was avoided and the integrity of the fruit preserved. During the drying period, the grapes lost 40-45% of their original weight. Vinification took place in the first two weeks of January. The dried grapes were de-stemmed, crushed and fermented in stainless steel tanks at temperatures between 8-22ºC. Maceration lasted 25 days, with daily pumping over. The wine was racked into 100% new oak barriques (225 litres) in March for 18 months. After blending, it spent seven months in 8,700 litre oak casks, and 14 months in bottle.
This is a classic of the appellation and embraces tradition and a sense of place. The wine has an imposing structure and depth, in its aromas of mature fruit and spices and on the palate, where alcohol is sustained by balanced acidity and refined tannins.