By Paul Caputo

Just north of the historic city of Verona in North East Italy, the volcanic soils of Soave are remerging as highly desirable wine-making terroir. As one of Italy’s most iconic white wines, there are few enthusiasts that have not come across these delicate, floral wines before. Yet far less are familiar with Soave’s new and improved authentic personality, produced from single vineyards, distinctive soils and with greater understanding of the area’s key grape variety - Garganega. These small production, artisan wines show delicious fruit that ranges from citrus to the succulently exotic alongside mouth smacking freshness and a mineral complexity rarely achieved elsewhere. Not only can these wines be stunning in youth, they also demonstrate the ability to age with intrigue.

The past few decades have been difficult for the appellation. A flood of insipid, generally poor wines gradually eroded its domestic and international appeal to inflict years worth of damage on Soave’s reputation. In many ways the stereotype of cheap, flabby and tasteless wines remains the same, but a vibrant scene of boutique producers and a creative, hardworking consorzio is showing people that Soave has turned a corner and now represents some of the best value white wine-making in Italy.

The area’s great wines of the past were produced in the hills that extend and fan out in an easterly direction from the commune of Soave. Heading due East the first peak is Monte Ronchetta, followed by Monte Fresca and then Monte Riondo. Heading South East (roughly) we reach Monte Tondo and Monte Zoppega. To the North, the village of Castel Cerino marks the end of the ‘Classico’ area, while to the north east the sub zone continues beyond the village of Brognoligo in a sweeping ridge which ends at the Torrente Alpone river.