2004 Trabucchi d’Illasi – ‘Amarone’ – Amarone della Valpolicella DOC

2004 Trabucchi d’Illasi – ‘Amarone’ – Amarone della Valpolicella DOC

As some of you might remember from my last blog post, Vino in Love’s blog anniversary was on May 14th. Of course, every anniversary needs to be celebrated with a proper wine. My choice was a 2004 Trabucchi d’Illasi Amarone. To regular readers of this blog, Trabucchi d’Illasi is no stranger because I previously reviewed most of their other wines, including a bottle of their 2006 Amarone della Valpolicella DOC, which I rated with 5/5 stars. Therefore, I was quite excited to try the 2004 vintage.

The 2004 Trabucchi d’Illasi Amarone is produced with Corvina, Corvinone, Croatina, Oseleta and Rondinella grapes. The hand-picked grapes get sun-dried for approximately 40 days on straw mats. During this process, which is called appassimento, the grapes lose most of their weight. The grapes become quite sweet with very intense aromas. However, this process sometimes also leads to an ABV that is above average. I will come back to the ABV later on.

Tasting Notes

2004 Trabucchi d'Illasi - Amarone - Ammarone della Valpolicella DOCPrior to drinking, the wine was decanted for a few hours..

In the glass, the Amarone had a garnet red color, which almost reminded me of an aged Barolo. On the nose, there were aromas of black cherry and lots of spices – mostly cinnamon, roasted coffee and vanilla. Honestly, I expected more aromas and the nose did not meet my expectations.

Alright, let’s talk about the ABV: The label listed alcohol by volume was 16%! At first, I thought that this had to be a mistake but it was not. I can say that I have tried quite a lot of different Amarone but I don’t recall any other Amarone that had such a high ABV.  But because Trabucchi is one my favorite wineries, I was sure that the ABV would not be a problem. I was wrong.

In the mouth, the wine was very, very, dry, quite tannic and warm. Later on, it became slightly sweet. I tasted red cherries and black fruits and cocoa. The wine was full-bodied was of good structure and had a lingering finish Sounds all good right? The problem was that I also tasted quite a lot of alcohol – too much alcohol. After every sip, I felt that the wine became worse because of the alcohol. It was such a pity and I really wished that the 2004 Amarone from Trabucchi d’Illasi had an ABV similar to the 2006 vintage (15% ABV).

3.5 / 5 stars      

Parting words

I really wished, that the 2004 vintage of Trabucchi’s Amarone was only nearly as good as the 2006 vintage or as their 2004 Riserva Cent’Anni Amarone. Maybe it was just my bottle but the bottle seemed fine and was stored properly. If you go for a Trabucchi Amarone, then I recommend that you give the 2006 vintage a try and better avoid the 2004 vintage. Both vintages retail in Munich for 59.90€.

But I have exciting news, if you live in Germany, then I highly encourage you to attend the Trabucchi d’Illasi wine tasting on Monday May 27th at L’Amar. For more information about the Trabucchi wine tasting, visit L’Amar’s website. I will attend the tasting myself and m already looking forward to it.

Have you tried the 2004 Trabucchi d’Illasi Amarone della Valpolicella DOC? If so, how did you like it?


12 comments on “2004 Trabucchi d’Illasi – ‘Amarone’ – Amarone della Valpolicella DOC”

  1. the winegetter Reply

    Ouch, that sucks. Sorry to hear the experience was sub par. The only wines I have found I can tolerate that have ABVs of up to 16% are South African Pinotages…

    It does hurt a wine a lot if the alcohol seems out of control. To me, it is just such a buzzkill and makes it hard to appreciate the other qualities in a wine…

  2. wineking3 wineking3 Reply

    I rarely buy red wine that has more than 14.5% alcohol. Only exception might be fortified wine..

    Really wished I could make it to that Trabucchi tasting. Just too far away but have fun!

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      I think it depends on if the wine is well-balanced or not. Some Montepulciano d’Abruzzo have an ABV of 15%+ and are quite spectacular

  3. talkavino Reply

    The increase in ABV on Amarone across the board had become a real problem for me. As you know, I love Amarone, but it is becoming harder and harder to find good Amarone in the late vintages (by late I mean the last 10 years)… I have to admit that I had great wines at 16% or even 16.5% ABV (California Zinfandel come to mind), and the whole question is in the balance. Most of the Amarone I tried in 15%+ range are not that balanced, unfortunately…

    It is a pity, and I think you need to talk to Trabucchi folks when you will go for the tasting on Monday – may be you will be able to at least make them think about changing the style…

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      Thanks for commenting.
      I will definitely talk to the Trabucchi guys about the 2004 Amarone. At the wine tasting they will serve their 2006 Amarone. Not sure why there is such an immense difference between the 2 vintages..

  4. Marco van Puff Reply

    So sorry to hear that the Amarone did not meet your expectations.
    I very much agree with talkavino, that the increase in ABV on Amarone is unsatisfying. It’s good to know though, that you like the 2006 Trabucchi Amarone. This means, that there are at least some Amarone that are still an enjoyment..
    If you talk to Trabucchi about the 2004 Amarone then let us know what they have to say about this…

    • Julian Rossello Reply

      Thanks for stopping by! I’ll let you guys know what the Trabucchi folks had to say about my experience with their 2004 Amarone.

  5. Suzanne Reply

    Congratulations on the blog anniversary but so sorry the wine disappointed. I know the feeling when you have high expectations and it doesn’t quite live up to them, Bummer!

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