Another Realm - 02 Dal Forno Valpolicella Superiore

Posted by Ian McFadden

Baby Amarone
2002 Dal Forno Valpolicella Superiore
Nothing Short of a Revelation

Dal Forno's wines occupy a special place. With Conterno's Monfortino, Rousseau's Chambertin, Egon Muller's Scharzhofbeger, the wines exist in the realm of the chosen few.

Wines that transcend most reasonable expectations.

Any portrait of Italy's Veneto region will undoubtedly showcase two kings: Romano Dal Forno and the late Giuseppe Quintarelli.

While Quintarelli was a savant of a traditional, nearly primeval method of winemaking, Dal Forno is a bit bolder.

Dal Forno's wines are über-concentrated and unbelievably dense; there is simply no other wine being made that is like these wines.

In 2002 Dal Forno's Valpolicella Superiore entered a new era - the wine henceforth is made with a 100% dried grapes. This brings Dal Forno's Valpolicella to a new level of full-throttle intensity and complexity and places it in close proximity to Dal Forno's epic Amarone (at least in intensity - the Amarone, at $400, is still in its own price range).

This is a powerhouse of a wine that defies any notion of the 2002 vintage as being a light or challenging vintage. Dal Forno is ruthless about his selection process and it shows here.

It offers a surging rush of sappy fruit, leather and earth all framed by a massively firm tannic structure. Yet, for all of its richness and monumental scale, the wine maintains an energy and clarity that's startling, and reminds you that a master is at work.

Dal Forno is one of the most maniacally conscientious winemakers that we know of. Case in point: Since taking over from his grandfather in 1983, he has outrageously increased vineyard density, which is now edging towards 13,000 vines per hectare (8,000 per hectare is typically considered severe.) In the cellar, he's similarly uncompromising - he's obsessed with cleanliness and only accepts pristine fruit.

Dal Forno's wines are like nothing else in the world of wine. His 2002 Valpolicella Superiore drives this point home with the same intensity that the wine possesses.

To order, please email us at or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Ian McFadden
Director Fine & Rare Wine
Crush Wine & Spirits