In a nutshell: A rich and luscious Valpolicella Ripasso from an award winning producer.
The lowdown: Once Soave was the main wine Ca' Rugate produced, but in recent decades these may well have been eclipsed by their superb Valpolicellas. Ripasso is a technique specific to the Valpolicella region and it used to concentrate flavour by re-fermenting young wine on the unpressed skins of Amarone. The result here is a full-bodied wine with smooth and concentrated flavours of ripe cherry, mocha, mint, cloves and vanilla. It has a really elegant, silky texture and a long velvety finish.
When to drink: Warm, structured and full of flavour, it's good to pair with pasta dishes with meat sauces, roasted red meat or medium aged cheeses.
Ca' Rugate is a family business that has been handed down through the generations of the Tessari family since the early 1900s. In the early days grapes were only of minor importance with cherries, plums, peaches and almonds forming their main crops. However in the aftermath of World War II Beo Tessari, son of the founder, bought vineyards at Monte Fiorente and built their first winery. And it was from here their wine producing business started to take wing. In 1986 the estate was named Ca' Rugate after the volcanic hills where the vineyards are located.
The estate is now run by the fourth generation of the family, Michele Tessari, who has brought with him a lively, passionate and entrepreneurial spirit. Considerable expansion has taken place in recent years with investment in a new technologically advanced cellar in commune of Montecchia di Crosara in the heart of the wine producing lands between Verona and Vicenza. To add to their existing vineyards in the Soave Classico area they've expanded into the Valpolicella area with the purchase of vineyards in the hilly zone of the village. Their range of wines encompasses all the styles that these well known regions produce plus some interesting sparkling wines as well. Over recent years Ca' Rugate has been highly rated by the prestigious Gambero Rosso organisation which is a testament to the consistent high quality of their output.