Soave – a superb Summer sipper!

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Soave (“swah-vay”) is a small Italian village near Verona and Venice which is famous for its white wines made mainly from Gargenega grapes. It is full of citrus fruit flavours, like melon and it has a touch of almond. As great as Soave is, and it is great as a Summer sipper it is much maligned by years of cheap bulk crap served in Italian restaurants in Ireland!

Coffele‘s delightful Castel Cerino Soave Classico exuberantely draws in the taster, keeping its excellent harmony and elegance. With the passing of each year, its youthful quality changes and becomes more mineral in the flavour and complex in the taste. Exclusively from their  organic hillside vineyards in Castel Cerino, in the heart of the historic Soave Classico zone, which range between 490-1470 feet above sea level.


The wine is a brilliant, straw yellow, with hints of green when young. The aromas are subtle and fresh, suggesting white flowers, from hawthorn to cherry blossoms, underpinned by fresh apple, white plum, sage, and minerals. On the palate, the wine is dry, with structure and good balance. The long finish has attractive almond notes. Makes an ideal aperitif. Also perfect with fish and shellfish. Goes very well with delicate pasta dishes, especially risotto with peas or asparagus. €17.95




Azienda Agricola Coffele

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coffele-valpolicella-1In 1971 Giovanna Visco and her husband Giuseppe decided to retire from teaching to breathe new life into Giovanna’s family’s estate: a property with cellars in the old walled village of Soave that had lain dormant for over 30 years.

Today their children, Alberto and Chiara, are in control of the day-to-day running and are the head and heart of the place. They are fully aware that the ingredients for a great wine come from the land itself. Around 30 hectares of immaculate vineyards are planted in the Soave Classico zone around Castelcerino (200-350m above sea level) on perfectly exposed hillsides. For about nearly a decade the winery has been following full certified Biodynamic practices (all natural – minimal intervention – spiritual viticulture) in their vineyards

The garganega grape variety from this location is prized for its ripeness and natural acidity when it ripens slowly, allowing for exceptional flavour development. Coffele’s wines often go a step beyond their peers, with the hard work and careful attention to detail that is given to the vineyards. The grapes are all hand-harvested using multiple passes through the vineyards to ensure picking at the perfect moment of ripeness.

This producer is doing a great job, maintaining standards of Soave that some of their neighbours in the area, with much larger resources, would be proud to achieve. The wines are typically high in finesse with delicate mineral notes.

Most recently, Coffele has expanded into the Valpolicella DOC with the purchase of a small estate in Campiano, and are now producing a Valpolicella and an Amarone.

COFFELE VALPOLICELLA 2017 Full of fruit: sour black cherries, blackberries, and ripe red cherries, with hints of balsam and spice and the slightest suggestion of herbaceousness. The aroma is rich and intense, but with great finesse. It is highly structured, harmonious, and delicate, with a long finish. The refreshing acidity balances out the wine’s alcohol, and the tannins are dense yet fine.

Verona – A wine lovers delight.

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A map of Bardolino & Valpolicella showing the location of Monte Zovo's 2 Estates

A map of Bardolino & Valpolicella showing the location of Monte Zovo’s 2 Estates

Veneto is one of the top regions in Italy for wine production, the area includes 20 DOC Zones and with in the region some of the best known DOC are located around the city of Verona. Bardolino, on the shores of Garda Lake, Valpolicella a little further to the East, and Soave further East still.The regions around Verona and lake Garda produce some of the most sought after wines including the rich and powerful Amarones, fresh and crisp Lugana and Soave whites and easy-going Bardolinos and Valpolicellas.  The importance of winemaking in this region can be seen by the creation in 1885 of the very first Italian school for vine growing and oenology. Also, Veneto was the first region to create a strada del vino or “wine road”. This wine-touring road features special road signs providing information on vines and the wines they are destined to become.

Our favourite producer in these parts is Monte Zovo, a relatively new winery founded in 2000 but owned by a fourth generation wine grower, the winery has vineyards in Bardolino and Valpolicella where the produce most of their reds from and some small holdings in Lugana to the south of Lake Garda, which they use to produce an excellent Lugana. The are also one of a small number of producers who still make Recioto della Valpolicella, a sweet wine made using the grapes that would be destined for the more expensive Amarone wines.

Here are some of our Favourites from Monte Zovo

1)  Monte Zovo Ca’Linverno Rosso 2009, Verona, Italy    Was: €20.95 Now: €17.95

Ca’linverno Rosso Veronese is a unique wine which born from an idea of Diego Cottini, Monte Zovo’s founder. It is the result of a long and exact production, invented more than 20 years ago by the Cottini Family. The grapes; Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara are dried in a two steps divided drying process. The first step is a period of natural drying upon vine, until the middle of November. The second step is drying inside natural conditioned rooms, as in the traditional straw mat method. Twenty-four months of ageing, in French oak barrels, complete the production process of this Rosso Veronese.  Balanced, vigorous and complex in its flavours this wine spreads the passion of the Family who created it. Love Ripasso then this is a must try!!

2)  Monte Zovo Valpolicella DOC 2012, Verona, Italy      Was: €14.95 Now: €12.50

A classic able to satisfy the demands of all kinds of wine drinkers. It originates from the noble lands of a centuries-old estate that lies east of Verona and once belonged to the marquises Maffei. Today it is the property of the Cottini family, who carefully select the grapes in the vineyard, scrupulously following a quality control procedure based on low yield and respect for the natural qualities of the grapes and wine obtained from them. After harvesting, the grapes are swiftly fermented so they are able to become a fresh wine with characteristic cherry aromas in harmony with all the taste components of the wine. Monte Zovo Valpolicella is very much one of a kind, a wine able to make any occasion truly unforgettable.

3)  Monte Zovo ‘Le Civaie’Lugana 2012, Verona, Italy      Was: €17.95 Now: €14.95

Trebbiano di Lugana grapes, which are used to produce the Monte Zovo Lugana are carefully selected in the historical area of Lugana’s DOC following a strict selection process. Monte Zovo’s Lugana is characterized by great balance and quality thanks to the peculiar exposure of its vineyards and thanks to the peculiar characteristics of the ground on which its grapes grow, that is stony and rich. Its flavours and aromas are fresh flowers and citrus and stone fruits. Dry and bold, it is perfect combined with fish and seafood dishes.