Amarone Duo from Pasqua
Pasqua 2010 Amarone della Valpolicella Mai Dire Mai 16.5%
Deep ruby in color with a black cherry core, this Amarone’s succulent attack quickly turns brooding on the palate. It layers on flavors of cassis, black raisins and shriveling figs, meat, peat and salumi. The first impression is heady with perceptible alcohol. However, the well-integrated tension at the core whisks away any clumsiness thanks to the stringy, vaguely drying tannins. Full in body but modest in viscosity, this is a stylistic combo of yesterday’s dense and dark Amarone combined with today’s easier-drinking, drier and less extract-driven styles. The modest layers of flavors and moderate finish mixed with the advancing of tones of fallen autumn leaves suggests this wine is entering its drinking prime.
Pasqua 2012 Amarone della Valpolicella 15%
Still profoundly youthful and closed when opened (though less so than it was a year ago when I last tasted it), this wine starts to spread its wings with about a half-hour of aeration in a decanter. It is massively raisiny and packed with dried blackcurrants. It’s dense, dark and brooding character make this a wine to enjoy a glass of with others; it’s not one you sip to the bottom of yourself, and that’s a good thing considering the wine’s high alcohol level! Intensity is the game here. The broad palate incorporates dried mulberries and touches of licorice. I am impressed by this wine’s concentration and balance, especially once it starts to open up. I’m curious to taste this again in a few years.