Corvinone wine guide
Corvinone is a red grape variety in Valpolicella and in the Lake Garda area, often used instead of or blended with Corvina Veronese to produce outstanding wines such as Valpolicella and Amarone Recioto, and Bardolino.
Don’t be fooled by the name, which might seem rustic and suggest a trivial and rude wine. Corvinone is quite the opposite! Corvina Veronese is more subtle, acidic, and elegant but also more challenging to grow because it prefers the hills and needs much more sun to mature. Ripening that arrives after the second half of September.
History of the Corvinone grape
For years it has been considered a simple clone of Corvina Veronese, but in reality, it is a vine in its own right. Of course, there are remarkable affinities and similarities in terms of flavors and aromas and obviously also genetically, they are closely related, but in 1993 he has recognized the rightful dignity and was registered in the National Register.
Production area of the Corvinone grape
It is part of the Olympus of the autochthonous vines of Valpolicella and Lake Garda: you can find it in the hilly area west of Verona that slowly slopes towards the shores of the lake. However, in percentage, its diffusion is much more sporadic. It does not tolerate the humidity of the plains and therefore is planted exclusively in the hills and with excellent exposure. Otherwise, it risks not reaching an adequate polyphenolic maturity.
Cultivating Corvinone is not easy at all. The winemakers who do it take significant risks because, as you well know, it is very delicate and sensitive to diseases and demanding. However, the results are exceptional, thanks to the finesse, complexity and liveliness that this grape brings, primarily when used to make Amarone della Valpolicella.
Wines produced with Corvinone grape
To be regulated, Corvinone can be present up to 50% in the Amarone blend, a slightly different percentage from Corvina, which varies from a minimum of 40% to up to 80%. It is not just a replacement for Corvina. They are often used in pairs, so it is not mutually exclusive, as in the case of Bardolino, where Corvina ranges from 35% to 80% with Corvinone, which can replace it with a balance of 20. %. The wines produced with Corvinone are: Valpolicella, Valpolicella Superiore, Bardolino, Amarone della Valpolicella DOCG, Recioto, Ripasso.
Is the time ripe for the Corvinone explosion? Perhaps, but he will never succeed in ousting Corvina for practical reasons, even if it is true that with the more frequent entry into the Amarone blend, the latter is slowly abandoning the muscular and sinewy style of marmalade wine that so many appeals to the Amarone. Americans, to recalibrate in a more elegant and subtle red wine. We will see it grow. After all, even the Rondinella seemed untouchable until a few decades ago … yet the best drying conditions of the grapes made it possible to use more Corvina, bringing Amarone towards a more precise stylistic definition.
Organoleptic characteristics of Corvinone wine
Unlike Corvina, Corvinone is never vinified in purity. It has a fleshy, crunchy, fruity bouquet with cherries and black cherries, counterbalanced by mint, flowers, juniper, and aromatic herbs. It is a broad, fruity wine on the palate but less sumptuous than the Corvina and fresher, lean also in alcohol. Difficult to enclose it in a category: it can give fresh and sunny wines such as Bardolino, but if the grapes are withering, the flavors, structure and alcohol increase, intensify and can a dark sea of spices and extract.