Welcome to Vine to Wine this is your host Linda Moran. At a local Italian restaurant I ordered a wine called Ripasso. None of my friends had ever heard of it. Today we explore the Italian wine Ripasso.
Ripasso is an Italian red wine that begins with the red wine Valpolicella. Ripasso is also an Italian term meaning repassed. It is a technique which adds additional flavor and alcohol to the Valpolicella. Now Valpolicella is a blend of the red grapes Corvina, Molinara and Rondinella. It is traditionally a young fresh red wine that is very approachable and easy to drink. These are the same grapes used to make a style of wine called Amarone. Amarone is made by harvesting those grapes and drying them. The raisin grapes are then pressed and the juice is fermented into a wine that is dry rich and can be quite delicious. In 1964 Masi Winery did an interesting thing. They took the nice fresh Valpolicella and put it though a secondary fermentation on the lees of Amarone. The lees are spent yeast and grapes solids that are leftover after fermentation and they are rich with flavor. So they essentially, repassed it over the lees. In addition the wines are barrel aged and bottled aged, to develop quite rich lush sturdy intense and really smooth red wine. This is a great deal of effort and is only done in years when the vintage is superb. And thank you for joining me on today's Vine to Wine.