About The Producer
- Tommaso Bussola is now often mentioned along with Giuseppe Quintarelli and Dal Forno Romano as the top estates in the Valpolicella appellation
- A former stonemason, Tommaso inherited the estate of his uncle and quickly took it to the top levels of the appellation
- The wines are exuberant and rich though they retain a freshness that gives them balance and drinkability
- The estate is fortunate to have some of the top vineyards in the appellation as well as very old vines
When Veneto legend Giuseppe Quintarelli was asked years ago to name the region's next superstar, he didn't hesitate: Tommaso Bussola. Quintarelli's prediction began to be realized in 1999, when Tomasso's 1995's were released. Among the countless accolades he received, Gambero Rosso gave him the first of many Tre Bicchieris for his majestic Recioto TB.
Learning on the Job - Originally trained as a stone mason, Tommaso took over over his uncle's Valpolicella estate--with its prized old vineyards in the heart of the Classico zone--in the mid-1980's. While vineyard work came naturally to him, he experimented relentlessly, and absorbed information and ideas from every source available. With each passing vintage, his wines came to show mocre polish, finesse, intensity, and personality. By the late nineties, his style had matured, and his wines had become world-famous for their incredible intensity of fruit. Like other top Veneto winemakers, he uses new barrels, but any hint of new wood is hidden by cascades of lush, opulent fruit.
Ancient Clones - The key, we think, is not only the age of his vines but the fact that they are nearly all naturally low-yielding ancient clones: Corvinone (40%), Corvina Grossa (25%) and Rondinella (20%) Corvinone, in particular, is quite rare today because of its low yields and finicky growing habits. Yet, Tommaso claims it is the Corvinone that gives his wines their depth. He calls it the "Super Corvina," saying that it produces stronger, denser, richer, more perfumed wines.
Small percentages of old vine Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Dindarella and Pindara round out the cépage, along with new experiments like Teroldego.
"Tommaso Bussola has an insatiable thirst for experimentation: he has a burning desire to see just how much he can draw out of his beloved Valpolicella area, and especially to know if he will be able to make the wine of his dreams." -Gambero Rosso (1999)"
VITICULTURE: Work in the vineyard is measured by the months and the seasons. In order to avoid excessive impoverishment of the lands, the various soils are periodically analysed and a programme of interventions with organic fertilizers is drawn up.
VINIFICATION: The grapes are crushed in October and ferment in stainless steel tanks with frequent pumpings over. Following this the wine is racked off the coarse lees. It remains in tank until bottling. The dried grapes are first crushed in January, and continue macerating and fermenting anywhere from 55/60 days up to 80 days, depending on the year.
AGING:The Amarones and Reciotos, after being racked, are separated from the coarse lees after 15 days. They are then put into tonneaux and barriques of oak from various provenances. Here the fermentation proceeds slowly for 24 months or longer. It may even continue as long as 30 months, always on the fine lees. Batonnage is carried out when necessary until the moment of bottling. In total the Amarone Classico remains about 40-42 months in second passagge oak - 80% barriques and 20% 12-25 HL botte grandi.
Grape / Blend
65% Corvina and Corvinone, 30% Rondinella, 5% Other varieties
Winemaker's Tasting Notes
From one of the very top Amarone producers, this Classico is a terrific buy for the money. Ultra rich with amazing complexity and a finish that lasts for more than 60 seconds. A tremendous effort! Dried fig and date notes enrich the baked cherry, eucalyptus and coffee liqueur flavors in this ripe and juicy Amarone, with creamy tannins. Medium- to full-bodied, showing ample spice and citrus details lingering on the finish.
Product size: 750ml