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2022 Pieropan La Rocca

Pieropan have been making wine since the 1860s and they are widely regarded as being the very best white wine producer in Veneto. They are renowned for their clean, refreshing and deliciously complex wines that are really eye-opening.  Eric Guido of vinous.com, notes:

You can’t speak of Soave’s greatest producers without including Pieropan. In fact, when this region was suffering a downturn in popularity due to the mass-produced and often-simple wines that had flooded markets, Pieropan managed to stay relevant, literally to the point that, today, their name has become synonymous with Soave.”

We recently tasted the brilliant 2022 Soave Classico La Rocca.  This wine comes from a single vineyard site (Pieropan were the first in the region to bottle a single vineyard wine) situated on the only limestone outcrop in the area. It is made from 100% Garganega and is fermented in 500 litre oak barrels. This lends a creamy richness and creates a more opulent and complex style whilst maintaining Pieropan's hallmark freshness and acidity. Whilst it can be enjoyed today, La Rocca does have the ability to age and will improve with a year or two in the cellar but can be kept even longer.

We love the wines of Pieropan; they have a class and character that is unique, and they make the ideal accompaniment to the current warm weather.  The La Rocca is our favourite; we also have stock of the crisper, spicy and mineral 2022 Soave Classico Calvarino.

The only oak-inflected cuvee at the estate. Aged in 100% used tonneaux, both French and Slavonian. Superb aromas of pistachios, peaches and dried mangoes. Broad and expansive, yet funneled into a vortex of tension by freshness that sublimates any sense of obvious power. A wonderful expression of a warmer vintage that suits perfectly this compelling site. Drink or hold.

Ned Goodwin, JamesSuckling.com, April 2024

This year's La Rocca is a very fine example of this distinctive, high quality Soave. Mid lemon with a real sheen in the glass, the nose is succulent and expressive, layering sweet peaches, tropical mango and finer confit citrus together with La Rocca's distinctive lick of sweet spice from the barrel maturation. This note is subtler on the palate, supporting the fruit and adding complexity. Initially oily and rounded, Garganega's tangy acidity props up the powerful orchard fruit at the core. There is a creaminess thanks to the extended lees ageing, lending a note of peach yoghurt that is similar to Condrieu, though the freshness of acidity and layered white pepper and woody herb tones offer something different. Long and silky on the finish, this is best enjoyed now, or over the coming eight years.

Thomas Parker MW, Farr Vintners, April 2024

The first single-vineyard created here, in the late 18th century. More black soil than in the Soave Classico. This is very good, meshing the inherent ripeness of the vintage with a mineral-infused pungency. Green apples, quince and stone fruit. Yet the feel is linear, cool and taut, with a growing trajectory of fruit sweetness across the long, energetic finish. A pithy exclamation to close. Drink or hold.

Ned Goodwin, JamesSuckling.com, April 2024