Wine Enthusiast Top 100 Sprits of 2022
Aromas of a grapefruit cradled by white flowers.
Gran Bassano Bianco is a vermouth based on Vespaiolo, white wine from native grapes of the DOC of which the city of Bassano is part. Vespaiolo features characteristic floral scents that attract the wasps (vespa), from which it is named. The original aromatic identity of Gran Bassano Bianco is due to a balanced infusion of over twenty botanicals, among which stand out hawthorn and elderflower, characteristic plants from Bassano area, as well as grapefruit, galangal, myrtle, sweet and bitter orange. Perfect as an aperitif to enjoy chilled and straight or in long drinks with ice and tonic water.
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Since 1898 the Poli family has been operating their artisanal grappa distillery located near Bassano del Grappa, in the heart of the Veneto. Today, fourth-generation Jacopo Poli has elevated grappa production to an art form. Selecting only the freshest grape pomace from some of the best winemakers in Italy, he uses a traditional copper pot still - in operation for more than a century! Jacopo works very closely with these producers during harvest and never accepts more grape pomace than can be immediately processed. This attention to detail has resulted in grappas with exceptional fruit character and unparalleled elegance.
Producing every style of wine and with great success, the Veneto is one of the most multi-faceted wine regions of Italy.
Veneto's appellation called Valpolicella (meaning “valley of cellars” in Italian) is a series of north to south valleys and is the source of the region’s best red wine with the same name. Valpolicella—the wine—is juicy, spicy, tart and packed full of red cherry flavors. Corvina makes up the backbone of the blend with Rondinella, Molinara, Croatina and others playing supporting roles. Amarone, a dry red, and Recioto, a sweet wine, follow the same blending patterns but are made from grapes left to dry for a few months before pressing. The drying process results in intense, full-bodied, heady and often, quite cerebral wines.
Soave, based on the indigenous Garganega grape, is the famous white here—made ultra popular in the 1970s at a time when quantity was more important than quality. Today one can find great values on whites from Soave, making it a perfect choice as an everyday sipper! But the more recent local, increased focus on low yields and high quality winemaking in the original Soave zone, now called Soave Classico, gives the real gems of the area. A fine Soave Classico will exhibit a round palate full of flavors such as ripe pear, yellow peach, melon or orange zest and have smoky and floral aromas and a sapid, fresh, mineral-driven finish.
Historically a dry, herb-infused, and sometimes pleasantly bitter fine wine, today vermouth is indispensable to any modern mixologist. Typically vermouths are Italian if red and sweet and French if golden and drier in character.