Valpolicella's Villa San Carlo

Top Of The Hill Vineyard's Terroir Driven Wines

By: - Feb 24, 2017

On a recent visit to the Valpolicella region of Italy, I had the opportunity to visit the magnificent estate of San Carlo, known for its traditional and sustainable approach  to winemaking.

The estate is referred to as Villa San Carlo and is family run by father, Gianni ‘Babbo’ Pavesi, daughter Antonia and son, Andrea, who are the owners of this ‘Top of the Hill’ vineyard, located a short distance east of Verona.

After driving up a narrow and winding dirt road, passing through rows and rows of olive trees, orchards and grape vines, the first sight of the 17th century villa is breathtaking.

The majestic Villa San Carlo,  perched on top of the hill is the focal point from the plain below.

The estate, owned by the Pavesi family, is 175 acres with approximately 60 acres occupied by vineyards. Most of the vineyards are located near the crest of the 1100 foot mountain and in-part, are divided climatically.

The wines made by the Pavesi family are complex, well-structured and express the terroir of the mountain.

Sampling the wines with the Pavesi family was a true privilege and a hands-on introduction to the various styles of Valpolicella.

The four wines we sampled were:

2015 Valpolicella
A soft, velvety, medium weight delightful wine, with a pronounced sour cherry and violet flavor, balanced and seamless.

2010 Amarone Della Valpolicella
Aromas of strawberry, raspberry, dried cherries and spice open up immediately as your mouth feels pleasant acidity, red plums and dark licorice.

2009 Valpolicella Ripasso Superiore
Ruby in color, with notes of lavender, rose pedal and sweet plum followed by lively acidity and a long finish

2009 Amarone Della Valpolicella Reserva
Vanilla cream and black cherry on the nose allures you and opens up to a palate full of Australian red licorice, dark cocoa and blackberries. Smooth, alluring and velvety on the palate, this first vintage of the Pavesi Family is sure to seduce your flavor buds.