Verona Wineries Big Names
Bertani is one of the most renowned and prestigious wineries in Valpolicella. With its timeless products has contributed to make Amarone what today this wine represents all over the world.
A tour of Bertani winery is a journey in the history of Amarone and Veronese enology.
A compelling story
The company was founded in 1857 by the two Bertani brothers, Giovan Battista and Gaetano. At that time the Veneto region and most of northeastern Italy were under the rule of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Giovan Battista and Gaetano joined the Italian unification movement and, wanted by the Austrians as subversives, had to flee from Verona. Gaetano went into exile in France, at that time the most advanced country in enological techniques. There he met Jules Guyot, one of the fathers of modern enology, and he became his disciple.
In 1866 Austrian troops, after bloody battles, left Veneto and Verona which became part of the newly born Kingdom of Italy.
Gaetano Bertani could return to Verona and started to apply in the vineyards and in the family's winery what he had learned in France. He introduced methods of vine cultivation more oriented to the quality of grapes than to quantity, he carefully selected vines, he applied the most modern enological technologies. The results were extraordinary, and Bertani's wines soon began to get awards and recognition in Italian and international wine fairs.
For the quality of its wines, in 1928 Bertani was awarded with the possibility to decorate its bottleeol with the emblem of Savoy as a supplier of the Italian royal house.
Bertani's Soave was in the list of wines served for the coronation party of King George VI of England in 1936.
Amarone Classico Bertani
In the 1950's Bertani bought Villa Novare, a magnificent neoclassical building of the eighteenth century surrounded by vineyards in the heart of Valpolicella Classica, and started producing Amarone.
At that time Amarone did not have its own identity yet. It was considered as a dry variant of the sweet Recioto which was the most prestigious wine of Valpolicella.
Bertani was among the first wineries to understand the potentialities of Amarone and built around it its project of excellence. A careful cultivation and selection of grapes, a long drying process of grapes on mats and up to 10 years of aging in huge oak casks. These are the secrets which guaranteed Bertani Amarone an incredible longevity and evolution potential, still today its distinctive traits.
The results have contributed to create the popularity of Amarone and the Bertani myth all over the world.
Still today Bertani follows the traditional method of production of Amarone: racks made of natural materials for drying the grapes for four months, and no less than six years of aging of the wine in large Slavonian oak barrels. The result is a timeless Amarone. A full bodied but elegant wine, complex but not intrusive, well balanced and full of harmony. A real "meditation wine".
Thanks to the high quality and the long aging in large casks, Bertani Amarones can age for decades in bottle. It is the winery of Valpolicella having the highest number of old vintages still for sale, even of the '60s and '70s. According to the opinions of experts, many of them still have potentialities of improvement.
In the evocative vault in the heart of Bertani's cellars you will find bottles dating back to the 1930s. They are no longer on the market, but they are certainly not there for decoration. They are still uncorked in occasion of special events and tastings, proving once again the longevity of Bertani's wines.
Besides Amarone, Bertani produces a complete range of traditional and innovative wines coming from all the wine areas of Verona.
Among the representative wines of Bertani there are Soave Classico and Secco Bertani in their vintage version, Sereole, Valpolicella Classica wines of the Villa Novare line, Recioto and naturally Amarone Classico Bertani.
Bertani Winery Tours
Bertani's headquarters in Valpantena can be visited upon reservation. A unique occasion for all Amarone lovers, especially for those who are looking for old and rare vintages.
The tour starts with the historical part, a real and proper museum of Bertani's wine, partly still in use, with the old cement tanks recently back in vogue among enologists. This first part of the tour ends with a collection of ancient fermentation vats, wine making tools of the end of the 1800's and beginning of the 1900's exposed in the rooms rich in atmosphere.
The tour continues in the underground cellar, with barrels and casks of every possible size and material neatly lined up in galleries and vaulted rooms. In recent years Bertani has reintroduced the aging in barrels made of a variety of woods: cherry, acacia, chestnut, in the sign of continuous innovation through tradition.
The tour also includes a passage through the corridor of the old vintages where Amarone and Secco Bertani are kept from the 1930s to today. A real and proper vault, even for value!
At the end of the guided tour of the winery we will move on to the wine tasting. There are many combinations of Bertani wines that you can try during the guided tasting. Whites, reds, traditional or more innovative.
At the wine shop at the entrance of the winery you will find for sale all wines including old vintages available. Shipping is possible, even international.
Bertani's headquarter is in Grezzana, a small town in the green Valpantena valley, coming from Verona at the beginning of the eastern Valpolicella.
It can be easily reached in about 20' by car.
To contact the winery directly: 045 865 8444
For more information about guided tours to Bertani wineries or to organize a tasting itinerary in Valpolicella: