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Wine: Villabella Ripasso Valpolicella 2005

This is our first wine feature. We will attempt to provide wine write-ups throughout the year which hopefully will enhance your food/wine experiences. Perhaps not just giving recommendations but maybe advising when to say, “No.”

The Villabella Ripasso Valpolicella comes from the Veneto (think Venice). There are subtle nuances of dried fruit which provides the mouth feel of a “baby Amarone.”

The packaging is elegant. Certainly I am not swayed to purchase wine by its aesthetic, but it is a bonus.

This Italian wine itself pours into the glass as a bright ruby red color. The nose presents with cherry and plum and hints of cinnamon. On the palate we perceived light pepper and the wine had good structure. It is light enough to enjoy throughout an entire meal. At approximately $16 a bottle, you cannot lose.

Recommendations would be to serve with grilled/roasted meats, deeply reduced tomato sauces, meat-based pasta dishes. The wine will even carry over into a dessert course of mature “bigger” cheeses. Enjoy while the cooler weather lasts!

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