Valpolicella Classico Superiore "Saustò"

2018
Italy
Veneto

40% Corvina/30% Corvinone/20% Rondinella/10% Oseleta & Molinara. Saustò comes from the same core estate vineyard as the Saseti Valpolicella Classico and the La Stropa Amarone: 25-year-old pergola-trained, co-planted, biodynamically farmed vines of only traditional varieties. The fruit for both Saseti and Saustò is harvested manually and at the same time, in late September-early October; it is destemmed and fermented spontaneously with native yeasts and without sulfur. Fermentation takes place in steel and concrete tanks, in 20-25 different lots, so that each parcel can be well-tracked. Most of this wine becomes the early-release Saseti, but a smaller quantity of the best, ripest lots is carved out to evolve into Valpolicella Superiore Saustò.

From that point on, the future Saustò has a longer maceration, including in good vintages 10 to 12 days with the pressings from Monte Dall’Ora’s recioto. The developing Saustò does not undergo a re-fermentation, contrary to what is assumed about all ripasso wines, but rather takes on greater yet still-subtle layers of complexity and amplitude. At a minimum, the wine is aged in old oak botti for 6 months and in bottle for 8 months. Because the ripasso process isn’t central to the character of this wine and isn’t undertaken annually, Monte Dall’Ora opts only to denote it only on the back label. The name Saustò is a contraction of “San Giusto”. Around 6000 bottles produced.

93 points
"The 2018 Valpolicella Ripasso Saustò seduces with waves of black cherry, exotic spice, roses and hints of brown sugar. It’s silky-smooth and elegant, yet cool-toned in nature, displaying ripe red berries and sweet spice under an air of pretty inner florals. The 2018 tapers off smoky and long, mixing hints of licorice with salty mineral tones. There is so much balanced pleasure to be found here. The Saustò undergoes a 10-to-12-day maceration with the pressed lees of Monte dall’ Ora’s Recioto, yet it doesn’t go through a secondary fermentation. The result is a Ripasso of remarkable freshness."
Eric Guido,
Vinous Media
January 2022

SKU/Code: 
DB8394-18
Product Line: 
Wine
Red
Varietal: 
Corvina blend
Farming Type: 
Biodynamic