The Campedelli family's Marion Estate is a relatively recent creation - they only started bottling their own wines in 1995. But increasingly they are seen as one of the most exciting producers in Valpolicella, winning fans including the legendary Romano dal Forno, widely acknowledged as the greatest winemaker in the region.
While many Valpolicella producers can turn out a powerful Amarone or Ripasso, there are only a handful, like dal Forno and Quintatelli, who manage to balance the richness of these styles with a savoury, mineral quality that makes the wine gloriously compelling. Marion's wines have this quality, and are some of the most satisfying and delicious examples we've tasted.
Valpolicella Ripasso is a style in between straight Valpolicella and Amarone. Straight Valpolicella is made from fresh grapes, and Amarone from grapes that are dried to concentrate them. Ripasso is a hybrid, made by running Valpolicella over Amarone skins. This gives a wine that is not as intensely rich as Amarone but is still weighty and full-bodied. In the right hands, its the perfect compromise.
We have a small parcel of Marion's 2015 Valpolicella Ripasso on the way and expected to arrive next week. It's drinking absolutely beautifully right now. A mature, rich red with serious underlying complexity, it's just delicious.