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Quintarelli Primofiore 2018

Quintarelli Primofiore 2018

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"The 2018 Primofiore wafts up from the glass wonderfully fresh and fruity, showing rosy florals, wild strawberries, green peppercorns and hints of sweet spice. This is silky in texture, with a hint of savory herbs up front, before further evolving to display tart wild berries with a subtle twang of sour citrus, which frames the experience nicely. The long, perfumed finale resonates with floral-tinged red and hints of blue fruit. This blend of 50% Corvina Veronese and Corvinone to 50% Cabernet Sauvignon and Franc is so incredibly pretty. Primofiore is matured for two years in cask and intended to be a more fruit-forward expression of Quintarelli. Drinking window: 2021-2026. 89 points

Quintarelli, located within the Valpolicella Classica region on the hills above the town of Negrar, strives to respect the legend and traditions established by Giuseppe Quintarelli over a career that spanned 60 years. During that time, Quintarelli oversaw the work of many of the region's best modern-day winemakers. For vineyard managers, cellar assistants, and enologists, time spent within the hallowed walls of this winery and cellar was like a golden seal of approval in the winemaking circles of the Veneto. It was with this in mind that the current generation set forward, after Quintarelli’s passing in 2012, to continue to work with the teams of winemakers and assistants that had gained knowledge under his guidance and that of Roberto Ferrarini, the estate's trusted enologist, who also passed away in 2014. As readers can imagine, the loss of these two prominent figures meant that the current generation, led by Fiorenza Grigoli (Giuseppe's daughter), needed to quickly get a handle on all of the intricate details and practices that went into creating this portfolio. While speaking with Francesco Grigoli Quintarelli (Giuseppe's grandson), the assistant manager of the property, he spoke in detail about how they only wished to make slow and careful changes, which started to take place in 2009. These included a reduction in oxidation, better control over the use of sulfites and lowering the average percentage of alcohol in the wines. The goal was to create a crisper, more vivid expression of fruit. Otherwise, practices have remained the same. Vineyard management can be described as natural yet practical, intervening only when the vintage demands it; and while passive air-drying of the grapes is preferred, the family is also prepared to use mechanical means if necessary to safeguard the health of the fruit. As for the current vintages, they show terrific purity of fruit and also come across cleaner. That said, Grigoli told me that his next goal is to bring back a bit more of Giuseppe’s character to future vintages."

Eric Guido, Vinous (02/21)