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Amarone della Valpolicella Classico 2016: a must have, in a market that remains receptive 

With the arrival of September, we have begun distribution of the 2016 vintage of our Tommasi Amarone della Valpolicella Classico D.O.C.G.; a year that was considered “awkward”, but in which our Amarone has amazed everyone with its refinement and character: an Amarone that reveals itself to be extremely elegant, with intriguing aromas and good balance on the palate.

A year, 2016, that was difficult on the whole, especially regarding the health of the vineyards, but which improved from autumn onwards and provided good fruit for drying, in order to make an Amarone which, in the glass, is complex and elegant. This just goes to show once again that wine, and Amarone in particular, can display an ability to evolve well in spite of the agronomic data and gloomy forecasts.

The La Groletta and Conca d’Oro vineyards certainly lived up to their reputation, aided by careful vinification in the winery and three years’ maturation in large Slavonian oak casks. The 2016 vintage stands out especially thanks to the great harmony of its sensory profiles, starting off with the “nose”, with an array of fragrances that ranges from sensations of red and black fruits to notes of jam, as well as spicy and balsamic nuances. The wine’s structure on the palate is similarly complex: Amarone’s characteristic sweetly fruity soul is nicely underpinned by the tannins, but especially by a tanginess that gives it a supple and juicy liveliness.

If one observes the market scenario for high-quality wines on a worldwide basis, Amarone is one of the products that has succeeded best in resisting the problematic effects of Covid-19.

 

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This is confirmed by an analysis from our Canadian partner Michael Shuster, of International Cellars, who has provided us with the following market breakdown:
«In British Columbia we have registered, since the beginning of the year, a drop in sales of Amarone of 4.5%.  The most substantial downturn has – as for all other premium wines – been in the hospitality sector, with a contraction of around 46%. We have, though, compensated for this loss with significant growth in the sales of Amarone to the government monopoly (up 2.1%) and particularly to private stores, where we have registered a notable increase of 37%. We have therefore recuperated most of the shortfall through retail sales. Even now, consumers are continuing to buy high-quality wines especially from retail outlets and are drinking them at home. We are also noticing this substantially positive trend for Amarone, even in this totally exceptional period resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, in Alberta as well, even if here the recovery in the hospitality channel is more problematic. This Province of Canada is, though, showing an upturn for Amarone of 6.9%. It should also be remembered that Tommasi’s Amarone della Valpolicella Classico is still the best-selling Amarone in both British Columbia and Alberta».

Famiglie dell'Amarone d'Arte in Stockholm 161014 Pierangelo Tommasi ©Photo:Claes Lofgren/winepictures.com

 We also find similar dynamics in various other areas of the global market.
«The markets where our Amarone has performed best in the last year are Scandinavia, Canada, and the USA, followed by Switzerland, Japan and Korea» underlines Pierangelo Tommasi, Executive Director. «Currently our distribution around the world is divided up equally between on-trade and retail. Because of the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, the HORECA channel has seen a notable slowdown and only now – fortunately – is gradually picking up.  The drop in sales in the on- trade, which has also affected those of Amarone, has been partly offset by an increase in sales to the markets where there are Monopolies, or through the online channel». 

«I hope that in 2021 we will be able to go back to normality, with a generalized reopening of restaurants and especially of the duty frees, which represent an important sales and positioning channel for Tommasi. 2020 has nevertheless brought with it – even in the difficult first three months – some important news for our Amarone: for example, the relaunch of a far-away, but significant market with great potential for growth like Australia. And in the last three months of 2020 and in 2021 we will begin new collaborations in certain markets in South America and South-East Asia».

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