Soave is one of Italian most exported white wine. Soave is Italian for “Suave“, and although many believe that the name is related to the often sleek and smooth characteristics of the wine, it comes the name of the village of Soave, few kilometers East of Verona along the motorway heading to Venice, where it is produced.
There are records proving that the vine was grown in the area of Soave since ancient time. Soave was a quite important Roman village along the via Postumia, one of the main Roman roads in northern Italy. Wine was transported along this way since that time, and its fame, especially for the sweet version, was already great in the past.
The most important vine for Soave is Garganega one of the oldest grape varietals in Italy. It is a very versatile grape and in recent years it has been introduced in other growing areas especially in northern Italy, even if it is only in Soave that Garganega expresses its true excellence.
Beside Garganega, Trebbiano di Soave is another major traditional grape varietal used in the grape blend of Soave wines. In recent years Trebbiano di Soave has begun to represent an ideal partner of Garganega.
All Soave dry wines have straw yellow color, sometimes with green highlights. Crisp nose of gentle flowers. The palate is delicate and light, with a gentle acidity and a bitter finish of almonds. Basic Soaves should be drunk within a couple of years from the vintage, while Soave Superiores, especially those aged in oak, can be stored in cellar up to 4-6 years.Soave DOC: it is one of Italy’s white wine par excellence. It is an essential wine, characterized by vibrant tartness. Very popular as an aperitif in all bars in Verona.
Soave Classico DOC: This is undoubtly a more complex wine made from hillside grapes. It is ideal with seafood, shellfish, antipasti (Italian appetizers), soup and, in general, with light and tasty dishes.
In the Italian labelling system, the word “Classico” means that a wine has been made with grapes grown in the historical production area of that specific wine. For Soave, the Classico area is within the municipality of Soave and Monteforte d’Alpone villages. The characteristic volcanic soil of these areas is an important element in the creation of a typical well balanced mineral palate.
Soave Classico Superiore DOCG: This is Soave top wine, made with grapes carefully for their higher ripeness level, selected in the best vineyards with limited yield on the hills north of Soave wine producing area. A special attention is given to the evolution of the wine in the cellars. Due to its great popularity the quality of Soave wine had dropped in the past 30 years. Especially basic Soave were often too light and bland. With Soave Superiore there is now a true Soave renaissance and you can easily find absolutely top rated white wines were the relationship with food is ideal with cheeses, eggs and white meats and even, for those Soave aged in wood, with stockfish.
Recioto di Soave DOCG: in 1998 this was the first wine in Veneto to achieve the Denominazione di Origine Controllata e Garantita (Guearanteed and Controlled Origin Brand), top Italian quality label.
Recioto di Soave is a wine with ancient traditions. The existence in the region of Verona, of a sweet white wine similar to today’s Recioto di Soave is testified to as far back as the 5th century a.D., in the famous letter by Cassiodoro, King Theodoric’s learned minister.
Like Recioto della Valpolicella, Recioto di Soave too is made with semi-dried grapes. Selected bunches of Garganega grapes are left to dry hanged to special racks in lofts above wineries. They stay there for at least three months and then are squeezed and fermented.
Recioto di Soave has a beautiful honey like color. The palate is smooth and rich and its sweetness is never annoying thank to the good balance given by Garganega typical acidity.
Recioto di Soave is excellent with dry cakes and cookies like cantucci and sbrisolona. Try it with long aged and moulded cheeses such as gorgonzola. It is also perfect as a meditation wine, to be drunk alone at the end of a nice meal.