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The longevity of Custoza wines

This content was produced in partnership with the Consorzio Tutela Vino Custoza.

Do Custoza wines age well...?

This content was produced in partnership with the Consorzio Tutela Vino Custoza.

In the 1970s, Custoza was the wine in Verona. Wherever you went, whether hotel, restaurant or bar, the wine served was Custoza.

It was the territory’s wine par excellence due to that immediate pleasantness, that fresh flavour, which made it a wine for every day.

Accessible, affordable, enjoyable and carefree; as it still is today. Its main feature lies in its freshness, slight aroma and agility. Simplicity is its essence –  it is a smooth and easy drink.

Custoza must be immediately good (ready to drink), as soon as it comes onto the market. This doesn’t mean that if it comes from high selections, it is unable to evolve and age well.

Of course, a series of elements needs particular attention: first the vines, then production and preservation.

For example, the right soils must be found; low production clones with sparse bunches must be used and from old vineyards. Irrigation in the vegetative period should only be practiced if necessary. Yields must be low and the grapes must reach perfect physiological ripening. Maximum care is required throughout the harvest, including during transportation, so that the grapes arrive at the winery in perfect condition.

Then, a soft pressing to avoid releasing too many substances, like catechins and anthocyanins – the main cause of oxidation. The musts should be cleaned with care using the cold technique, and the fermentation temperature must be well controlled. Barriques, wooden barrels, cement or steel do not specifically affect longevity.

In fact, most Custoza wines are only kept in stainless steel, though there are a few producers using traditional wood. Preservation is important: careful and in the right place, and not exposed to heat or light.

‘We have disproved the mistaken idea that our wine should just be drunk young,’ says Luciano Piona, owner of La Cavalchina winery and President of the Consortium.

‘We organized ‘white&gold’, a series of comparative tastings in Italy and abroad. On the one hand, we offered young, crunchy and slightly aromatic wine for tasting while, on the other, we served the results of high selections with at least ten years behind them (going back as far as 1999) .’

‘We therefore demonstrated that Custoza’s typical acidity remains strong and solid over time. We also did a time parallel, managing to show the origin of our terrior, those mineral-rich morainic hills which, over time, surface in the glass with all their flavour.’

Three wines to try

Albino Piona “SP” Custoza Superiore Doc 2011

Striking olfactory profile, medicinal herbs, Williams pear, extreme accuracy and precision. Sleek acidic shoulder to sustain the fruit’s ripeness, well-registered balance, tasty lunge, energetic trace and long finale to fully enjoy.

US importer: $30 VOS SELECTIONS 555 Eigth Avenue, Suite 1209 – NY 10018 New York USA DIVINE IMPORTERS LTD
UK importer: £15 Unit A4 Springhead Enterprise Park, I Sprnghead Road – DA118H8 Northfleet (Kent)

Cavalchina “Amedeo” Custoza Superiore Doc 2009

Ample fragrant plot, in live alternation (hydrocarbons, dried fruit, smoky and mineral notes). A wine conceived to last through time, it shows all its ability to speak of a territory, a stylistic work of great class and depth.

UK importer: £15 VinumTerra
USA importer: $25 Marc de Grazia e Eagle Eye

Monte del Frà “Ca’ del Magro” Custoza Superiore Doc 2008

Intense, rich and generously abundant olfactory timbre with hints of medicinal herbs, saffron, dried fruit. Gustatory tension expands well on tasting and is persuasive and elegant, while still maintaining structure and fullness.

USA importer: $22 Martignetti Group price Cà del Magro
UK importer: £18 Berry Bros. & Rudd Cà del Magro


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