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The walled city of Soave in the Veneto region is the source (and namesake) of one of the great classic Italian white wines. The town dates from Roman times, and so does the winemaking tradition. The Romans were big fans of minerally, floral wines like those of Soave. The Garganega grapes, that for many centuries have produced Soave wines, come mainly from vineyards in the hills that rise behind the town and march northwestward toward the eastern Valpolicella. This area is now known as Soave Classico and is still the source of the best wines of the denomination due to the hills’ volcanic soils. 

Leaving Soave through the Porta Aquila—the north gate of the city’s 14th-century walls—a walk of a mile and a quarter (including a climb of about 500 feet) leads to the top of Mount Foscarino, a dormant volcano now covered with grapevines. In the 1960s, Giuseppe Inama began buying up small vineyard plots on this peak in the heart of the Soave Classico zone, and as a result, the Inama winery today owns most of the vineyards on Mount Foscarino. Giuseppe Inama saw the great potential of these old, traditional vineyards at a time when others were more intent on producing larger quantities in the plains for inexpensive exports. His son Stefano, who took over the winemaking duties in 1992, has continued to work tirelessly to realize the potential of these vineyards, working with some of the very best vineyard management consultants in the world to get Inama’s vineyards into the best possible shape. 

Near the top of the hill is a large wooden platform with a 270-degree panoramic view to the south and east. To the right at a distance, it is easy to spot the crenellated walls and towers of Soave Castle as it keeps watch over the town. In the foreground are Inama’s tidy vigneti di Foscarino (Foscarino vineyards). And to the left, over the vineyards and across a broad valley, are a set of hills that are the home of Inama’s other project. These hills—the Colli Berici—are composed of iron-rich terra rossa, a soil type that is prized worldwide as being ideal for growing red winegrapes, and indeed this is where Inama gets its red wines.

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WINERY LOCATION: San Bonifacio, Veneto
REGION: Soave DOC, Colli Berici DOC, IGT Veneto
VINEYARD LAND: 134 acres (54 ha)
FARMING PRACTICES: Organic
GRAPE VARIETIES: Garganega and Carmenère; smaller amounts of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc
WINE STYLES: Dry white; dry red
TOTAL WINE PRODUCTION: 450,000 bottles (335,000 liters)
YEAR FOUNDED: 1967
OWNER(S): Stefano Inama
WINEMAKER(S): Stefano & Matteo Inama

WINES

INAMA “VIN SOAVE” SOAVE DOC CLASSICO

Vin Soave is the main production for the estate, an entry-level wine that nevertheless comes from vineyards farmed the same way as for Inama’s reserve wines—“a little luxury for everyday.” The wine is made from 100% Garganega in stainless-steel tanks to stress the importance of freshness and Garganega’s floral notes. Along with the enhanced minerality from the vineyards’ volcanic soil, the result is a wine with great versatility in combination with food.

INAMA “FOSCARINO” SOAVE DOC CLASSICO

Foscarino Soave Classico is a wine that demonstrates the real potential of the Garganega grape. Inama uses a selection of some of its oldest vines, from vineyards (vigneti) on volcanic Mount Foscarino in the Soave Classico area. The vineyards face east, catching the morning sun but avoiding the afternoon heat, which helps to maintain the beautiful floral notes and the minerality but with a deeper and more complex texture. 

INAMA "CARBONARE" SOAVE DOC CLASSICO

"Carbonare" is a wonderful vineyard of old pergolas that greets the morning sun, overlooking a steep sided valley.  Located halfway up the hillside with exposure to the East, the vineyard has a noticeably different microclimate compared to Foscarino. The fresh air comes down from the Val d’Alpone and its Piccole Dolomiti. The natural balance of the plants and the adjacent streams indicates that water flows underneath, a precious resource for producing a great white wine. The basalt, which characterizes the ground in most of the Soave Classico area, has great chromatic complexity here, fading from black to green, red and orange.  The strong character of the vineyard is evident in the grapes: joyful aromas of citrus, effervescent acidity, mineral freshness.

INAMA "I PALCHI" FOSCARINO GRANDE CUVÉE SOAVE DOC

I Palchi was born from the collective desire of the 3rd generation of the winery to pursue their ambitious goals in expressing the potential of their family's work and land.  I Palchi is a new wine for the estate that redefines the characteristics of Soave Classico.  Only the finest micro parcels of old vine Garganega planted in terraces across the slopes of Monte Foscarino, an inactive volcano, are selected for this new wine.  The resulting wine is one that encapsulates the best of this ancient volcano and territory - refined and elegant with the persistent minerality and complexity that only wines from volcanic soils can exhibit.

INAMA “CARMENÈRE PIÙ” VENETO ROSSO IGT

Inama has launched a major exploration into the possibilities for Carmenère in Italy, and Carmenère Più is the main product of this effort. Carmenère is a pre-phylloxera staple of Bordeaux wines that was brought to the Colli Berici area of Veneto at least a century and a half ago. Yet when this wine was first made, Carmenere was not an approved grape variety for labeling purposes in this area and was considered a type of Cabernet. Nevertheless, this wine demonstrates that Carmenere can be a lovely addition to Veneto’s more common red varieties, producing wines with beautiful concentration and freshness. A portion of old-vines Merlot is blended with the Carmenère to add a bit of softness and roundness.

INAMA “BRADISISMO” COLLI BERICI CABERNET DOC

Bradisismo was the first red wine produced by Soave-based Inama, in 1997. It combines Cabernet Sauvignon with a former Bordeaux grape variety, Carmenere, that has been grown in the Colli Berici area for around 150 years. This is now in effect Inama’s reserve wine, elegant with a touch of spiciness. The wine’s name is Italian for bradyseism, a geological term for uplifting of the Earth’s crust by deep lakes of magma—the process that formed the Colli Berici.

INAMA “ORATORIO DI SAN LORENZO” COLLI BERICI DOC CARMENÈRE RISERVA

Oratorio di San Lorenzo is Inama’s top-tier red wine, showcasing the estate’s efforts to bring the Carmenere grape variety back to prominence in the Colli Berici area of Veneto. The wine is pure Carmenere, made from a selection of the best grapes in the best vintages only. To date, Oratorio di San Lorenzo is the only Carmenere Riserva made in Colli Berici DOC. Its name honors a Benedictine monastery (oratorio) nearby dedicated to Saint Lawrence.

LOCATION


WINERY:
San Bonifacio, Veneto

VINEYARD:
Soave (Verona province) and Colli Berici (Vicenza province), Veneto

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NEWS AND REVIEWS FROM OUR FRIENDS IN THE INDUSTRY



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94
APRIL 2022
Inama “Foscarino” Soave DOC Classico 2019

The 2019 Soave Classico Foscarino is honeyed and floral, with hints of almond paste enriching the crushed apples and pears that form its bouquet. This is rich and pliant, almost glycerol-like in feel, contrasted by depths of saline-minerals and citrus-tinged acidity. It’s a remarkably deep and almost heady experience wine, yet it’s balanced by a serious salty character that turns floral toward the close with a hint of young kiwi. The 2019 is a really fascinating expression of textures and perfumes. Color me impressed.

96
MAY 2023
Inama "I Palchi" Foscarino Grande Cuvée Soave DOC 2020

Beautiful nose of white peaches, mangoes, jasmine, waxed grapefruit, thyme and hints of salted sourdough. Distinct salty, ashy minerality. It’s medium-bodied, vibrant and textured. Stony and crisp, yet creamy and flavorful throughout. Serious Soave. The second vintage from an old-vine selection from the historic, volcanic Monte Foscarino vineyards. Drink now or hold.

93
MARCH 2023
Inama "Carbonare" Soave DOC Classico 2020

The 2020 Soave Classico Carbonare is savory and finessed, with hints of sage and rosemary giving way to dusty dried florals. This is silky and round on the palate, complicated by saline minerals and tart orchard fruits, all kept in constant motion by stimulating acidity. Young peach and pear notes linger through the tension-filled finale as this finishes with a salty flourish that keeps the taster looking back to the glass for more.

93
OCTOBER 2022
Inama "I Palchi" Foscarino Grande Cuvée Soave DOC 2019

Fermented in 60% barrique and 40% large casks, this has understated aromas recalling yellow stone fruit, camphor, field flower and citrus. The elegant palate has layers of subtle depth, featuring dried apricot, lemon drop, tangerine and toasted almond before a tangy mineral close suggesting wet stone. This screams out for food and can accompany the entire meal. Dalla Terra Winery Direct.    

94
APRIL 2022
Inama "I Palchi" Foscarino Grande Cuvée Soave DOC 2019

The 2019 Soave Classico I Palchi Foscarino Grande Cuvée shows more orange oils than lemon with exotic florals and wet stone. It’s amazingly textural and deep with a candied hint to its vibrant orchard fruits. This is less minerally forward and instead richer than the rest of the portfolio, even showing a bit of almond paste that complements the ripe orchard fruits within. The finale is long and staining, leaving primary concentration and nuanced tannins. Through it all, remarkable freshness is maintained. This is Inama’s new super selection that's matured all in 2nd and 3rd-pass twelve-hectoliter casks. It has a large-scaled feel, yet it should age effortlessly.

95
APRIL 2023
Inama “Bradisismo” Colli Berici Cabernet DOC 2020

A close-to-even blend of cabernet and carmenere, with an increasing percentage of merlot and franc. Violet lift. Green olive spread. Chili, spearmint, bitter chocolate and dense, boysenberry confiture. Yet the feel, while full-weighted, is immensely savoury. The oak, an enticing framework, melding effortlessly with the density of the wine and modern, prescient style. This has a strong Bordeaux feel to it, with an extra degree of polish and richness. Drink or hold.

93
FEBRUARY 2024
Inama “Foscarino” Soave DOC Classico 2021

The 2021 Soave Classico Foscarino seduces with a rich blend of lemony custard, hazelnut, young peach and wet stone. Luxuriously round and silky in feel, this finds a beautiful balance through its core of mineral-drenched pit-fruits and brisk acidity. It finishes with incredible length and staining concentration, leaving a chalky sensation as the mouth waters for more. The 2021 Foscarino is beautiful today yet also built for the cellar. It was refined on lees for six months in a combination of barrique, large oak and steel, with bâtonnage every three weeks, followed by six months in stainless steel on fine lees.

93
JULY 2021
Inama "Carbonare" Soave DOC Classico 2019

Intense floral and mineral character to this with notes of ripe pineapple on the nose that grow in intensity on the medium-to full-bodied palate, before giving way to a long and tight, almond-milk and mineral finish. I like the progression through this. Drink now.