Sunday, March 1, 2020

Comparing and Pairing Inama's Soave Classico Wines

Tasting and learning about wine is a journey that is neverending.  When you really dig into the details and want to get a deeper understanding of a particular region and particular sub-regions or even further particular parcels it gets really fun. Today I share two wines from the Inama winery in the Soave Classico area of the Veneto region.  Both located within the Soave DOC appellation, but one is grown on a single vineyard site.  Very different wines so come discover what makes them unique.      

The Wine Area ~ Soave 
Soave is a wine area within the Veneto region located northeast of Verona.  Between the romantic town of Verona, Lake Garda and the vineyards of Soave, Valpolicella and Bardolino all within close proximity to one another it is a beautiful area to visit with much to see.   I visited this region back in 2009 and just happened to catch some sort of festival in town.  I love when that happens! 
Soave was one of the first delimited wine zones in Italy back in 1931.  It is named after the medieval town, Soave, encompassed by ancient walls attached to a beautiful castle with vineyards all around.  This is the heart of the Soave Classico wine appellation that stretches from Soave to Monteforte d’Alpone towards the hills of the north.  Within Soave Classico you will find some reputable single-vineyard sites that allow one to experience the true taste of the land as you’ll see in Inama’s single vineyard Foscarino shared later in this article. 

As it seems at one point in time a number of wine regions in Italy faced a period decline due to a focus on quality over quality.  A number of Soave producers have worked diligently to turn that image around in a positive light to highlight the quality produced within the region, Inama included. 

Under the Soave DOC the requirements include a minimum of 70% usage of the garganega grape with an allowance of up to 30% trebbiano di soave and/or chardonnay.  Although, you will find many producers that make Soave from 100% garganega.   

The Winery ~ Inama 
The Inama winery was established back in 1967 by Giuseppe Inama and is located in San Bonifacio.  He bought a number of small vineyard sites in the Soave Classico area, owning much of the land on Mount Foscarino.  In addition to the Soave Classico area they also own vineyards in the hills of Colli Berici where they grow their red grapes on iron rich soil.   
Vineyards at Inama sourced from Azienda Agricola Inama
Giuseppe’s son, Stefano, took over as winemaker in 1992 and continues the focus to produce world class wines.  Today, Inama’s production size is around 450,000 bottles.  To read more about the winery please refer to my previous article on Inama. 

The Wines 
2018 Inama “Vin Soave” Soave Classico DOC 
This is Inama’s entry-level wine.  Made 100% from the garganega grape this wine is put in stainless steel, which helps showcase freshness in the wine as well as the florals.  Straw colored with beautiful floral aromatics with citrus and stone fruit.  Light and crisp showing steely, refreshing acidity and lemon rind.  Finishing off with good length.  ABV 12% SRP $14 

2017 InamaVigneti di Foscarino” Soave Classico DOC 
These garganega grapes are grown on Inama’a single vineyard site facing east called Foscarino.  These are some of Inama’s oldest vines, or vigneti.  The soils on Mount Foscarino carry lots of minerals due to it being a dormant volcano.  This wine is made also from 100% garganega and is fermented in used barriques.  Before racking this wine goes through battonage every 6 weeks for 6 months before it is put through fining in stainless less for another 6 months.   

I loved doing this comparison as these wines were very different showing you how a particular vineyard produces such particular wines.  Straw colored with more golden hues.  On the nose this wine showed much more ripe and rich floral and stone fruit. I saw some Riesling similarities.  A dry, well-balanced wine with more texture and notes of citrus and tropical fruit. ABV 12.5% SRP $17 

It’s well worth buying both of these at these price points to have some fun comparing the two. 
Food Pairing 
I prepared a simple dish one evening that complimented the wines well. I made garlic butter shrimp with a spinach frittata made with pecorino romano.  Not typical of the area, but sometimes you have to improvise and experiment with variety.  

 


*These wines were provided as samples, but opinions are always my own.

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