From €7.95, $11.99, NZ$19.99, £10.95
Find the Pieropan, Calvarino 2014 mentioned en passant in this article
Find the Fattori, Runcaris NB this link will yield vintages back to 2011 but I am recommending only 2014 and 2015
Yes, you will drink Soave! This is the second wine of the week from that oft-traduced and oft-scorned denomination in three months. See Julia’s Soave wine of the week from March for masses of background detail about the region.
For once Julia and I were both among attendees of a fine and illuminating recent vertical tasting of wines from the master of Soave, Pieropan, so you will soon be suffering from a surfeit of Soave – but then top-quality Soave increasingly exists.
At the Pieropan tasting I was most impressed by Pieropan, Calvarino 2014 Soave, which sells for closer to £17-20 a bottle in the UK than the £10.95 asked for the Fattori Runcaris in Jeroboams shops. The Pieropan wine, with the highest extract ever, apparently, manages to be both tense and round, and has a particularly attractive herbal quality on the nose. The vertical tasting showed that it should have the ability to age for many a year.
I would recommend drinking Fattori, Runcaris 2014 Soave over the next year or two, but it is distinctly superior to the more basic wines produced by this relatively large outfit. They have a total of 57 ha (140 acres) of vineyards, in which agrochemicals have been phased out, in eastern Soave, in Montecchia in Valpolicella and in Monte Lessini.
The fruit for Fattori, Runcaris 2014 Soave Classico is drawn from 14 ha (35 acres) of hand-picked 25-year-old Garganega vines at elevations of between 150 and 250 m (490-820 ft). I was impressed by the richness of the 2014 and really did note toasted almonds before remembering that that was my ‘trigger aroma’ for Soave. The wine is 12.5% alcohol and was aged on lees in stainless steel for five months.
Those who have a copy of Wine Grapes will know how important Garganega is to many significant Italian white wine grapes. It has a parent-offspring relationship with the significant likes of Trebbiano Toscano, Catarratto, Malvasia Bianca di Candia, Albana and others.
Fattori, Runcaris 2015 Soave Classico is the produce of an even better, drier vintage, and notes on the back of the bottle that it is from 'volcanic soil' (see Julia's Soave wine of the week). It is a little more 'mineral', chewy and tense than the 2014 but shows the same richness of fruit. I should imagine it will gain even more breadth in bottle and would be happy to keep it for another couple of years. It too is 12.5% alcohol.
According to wine-searcher.com, the keenly priced Fattori Runcaris 2014 is available in Germany, the US, New Zealand and Ireland. One US stockist of the 2015 is also cited already.
In the UK it is imported by Laytons and sold through their Jeroboams shops, which currently have a mix of 2014 and 2015, at £10.95 a bottle. The 2015 is also being offered online at £73.54 for a dozen bottles in bond via this link.
The picture of one of Fattori’s most prized hillside white wine vineyards comes from their website.