Mr. Amarone

A range of great Amarone going back twenty three years.

Mr. Amarone, Sandro Boscaini, president of Masi, specialists in all things appassimento, put on a great tasting this afternoon. It was Sandro’s father who first dreamt up the idea of Ripasso in the late 1950’s, making the first commercial vintage in 1964. Some years later, he offered the name to the local Chamber of Commerce, thus allowing other producers to use the term. He is not entirely happy with the current standards (some use the dried grapes three times – the result he says is a bit like a teabag; it gets lighter each time). However we were tasting Amarone. We tried eight wines, including six of the Masi Costasera, their ‘standard’ Amarone, and two vintages of Serègo Alighieri Vaio Amaron, from the ancient estate of the family of Dante Alighieri. It was a really good reminder that high alcohol wines can be perfectly balanced; also that Amarone, a much abused name, is a great wine. Some really good, and two absolutely stunning wines.


 Masi Costasera Amarone 2007

Young, intensely fruity wine, plums, baked fruit and spices. Good acidity, good length; a very good young wine. 14.5/20


Masi Serègo Alighieri Vaio Amaron Amarone 2005

Deeper in colour with pure dark chocolate, coffee and intense ripe dark fruits and vanilla; tannic and long, hugely concentrated. A very impressive young wine, which will only improve. 17.5/20

 Masi Costasera Amarone 2000

Starting to show some mature notes of tea and prunes, but still has some very attractive primary cherry fruits too. Savoury, long and very stylish wine. 16.5/20

 Masi Costasera Amarone 1998

Brown sugar on the nose; soft savoury liquorice flavours – tea, prunes and chocolate too; the alcohol stuck out a little at first, but it opened out very nicely, with a good bitter finish. 16.5/20

 Masi Costasera Amarone 1995

A slightly dirty nose initially, which blew off after a bit. Old woody, mint and figs, but a little vegetal too. Good, but not my favourite. 13.5/20

 Masi Serègo Alighieri Vaio Amaron Amarone 1995

A stunning wine of great power, complexity and balance. Big savoury plums soy, liquorice, cassis and hints of mint; changes all the time in the glass. Huge concentration, a lovely long bitter finish. 18.5/20

 Masi Costasera Amarone 1993

Hard to follow the wine above, and this was fine, but probably starting to fade a little; stewed tea, herbs, some soft prunes and a leafy note. Elegant and enjoyable. 16.5/20

 Masi Costasera Amarone 1988

I thought this was past it at first, but it opened out beautifully to reveal wonderful mature flavours of grilled hazelnuts, stewed fruits and raisins. Lovely sweet-sour flavours. 17/20


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