2015 Gallery Collection #3, Elephant in the Room, Amador County Tempranillo

Gallery Collection
By matt Smith
2015 Amarone Style Tempranillo
Well, this was the brick-to-the-head obvious choice for a Gallery Collection label. It has an elephant, it is in a room, and it is holding a wine bottle. Done. Easy. Tempranillo is a Spanish grape variety best known for being the red grape used in Rioja, as well as Ribero de Duero and other regions. There you are most likely to find Tempranillo a rustic, earthy wine with dry tannins.   However, this Tempranillo was vinified like Amarone, one of Italys most distinctive wines.  Amarone is a class of wine made in the Valpolicella region.  To make Amarone the native grapes there (mainly Corvina and Rondinella) are harvested at full ripeness, then left to dry on straw racks for as long as three months (a process called Appassimento).  The grapes will lose roughly 35 to 45% of their water weight before they are crushed and fermented.   In the case of this wine, Tempranillo grapes from California were dried on bamboo racks for 90 days. Then crushed, fermented, and allowed 30 days of skin contact to create a wine exhibiting some of the rustic qualities of Tempranillo but dominated by hallmark Amarone characteristics (shall we say, the elephant in the room?).  Full, smooth and rich the wine exhibits raisiny characteristics with very little acid. Alcohol in excess of 15% does not detract from the drinkability of this wine and only adds to its age-ability.  In Italy Amarone is considered the great contemplation wine... wines for great thought and discussion, perhaps about your Elephant?

Alcohol by Volume: 15.50%
Ring white
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