Some of the most mind-blowing wines - 2005 Quintarelli Valpolicella Classico Superiore

Posted by Ian McFadden

The Master
2005 Quintarelli Valpolicella
Classico Superiore

"Some of the most mind-blowing wines being made anywhere."
-Antonio Galloni

It's impossible to talk about Valpolicella without the name Quintarelli.

He was a game-changer. His unyielding approach - at once ultra-traditional and idiosyncratic - was revolutionary; the wines, transcendent.

His wines are singular and justly legendary - I'm constantly keeping my eyes open for well-priced parcels and they pop up very infrequently. Quintarelli represents the absolute pinnacle that wine can achieve and the wines get priced accordingly.

Rich and concentrated, the Valpolicella Superiore shows off dark fruit, earth and tannin in all of its glory - more like an Amarone than a so-called "simple" Valpolicella. But there is also a fineness to the wine, a sense of simultaneous clarity and perpetual evolution that lifts Quintarelli to seemingly impossible heights.

This is why Quintarelli has reached almost mythical status in Valpolicella. Why Antonio Galloni dubbed them, "reference point wines."

When Bepi, as he was known, passed away in 2012, he left a void in the wine world that may never be filled. He turned his back on the insipid Valpolicella that was the norm of the region, in the unrelenting pursuit of something great. The results were wines of heartbreaking depth and soulfulness. His wife, daughters, and grandsons have continued to run the storied estate, and thankfully all reports indicate that quality hasn't slipped one bit.

The 2005 is the most recent release, after a full seven years of aging in Slavonian oak barrels before deemed "ready" - standard procedure for Quintarelli is absolutely unheard of for any other Valpolicella. Long, long aging is just one marker of the extremely conscientious winemaking Quintarelli espoused. Low yields, rigorous selection, borderline maniacal attention to detail: For a producer with this much hype, his philosophy is astonishingly simple - though the resulting wines are anything but.

The 2005 is just beginning to reach its stride, but is built to age beautifully for another 15 years or more. The 2005 has power and depth to spare, with a radiant energy that adds an elegance and multidimensional complexity.

Quintarelli's Valpolicella simply occupies its own unique category. It exists in its own singular, elite plane. The only person who makes Valpolicella that could even hope to compete is Dal Forno and their styles are polar opposites.

Antonio Galloni was right when he called Quintarelli's "some of the most mind-blowing wines being made anywhere."

To order, reply to or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Ian McFadden
Director, Fine and Rare Wine
Crush Wine & Spirits