Pieropan: A Small, Family Producer in Italy’s Soave Region

By Kori ~ September 4th, 2013.

This summer, our family vacationed in Italy. It was my first trip to Italy, a place that had been on my travel bucket list for some time. While this trip was truly a family vacation filled with sightseeing, I’m sure it will come as no surprise that we Wine Peeps worked in some winery visits as well.

We visited Pieropan, a small, family winery, located in the center of the town of Soave. Soave is in northeastern Italy in the province of Verona, about halfway between Venice and Milan. Only white wine is produced in the Soave region with a minimum of 70% of the wine coming from the Garganega grape.

Founded in 1890 by Leonildo Pieropan, the estate is now in the hands of the third and fourth generations. Leonildo and his wife Teresita run the winery along with their two sons Andrea and Dario. We had the pleasure to meet Andrea who gave us a tour of the winery and tasted us through their wines.

While the majority of Pieropan’s wines are the dry white wine most common in Soave, they also produce a limited-production late harvest Recioto that is dried on traditional bamboo mats, the same mats that were used by its founders over 100 years ago. In fact, Pieropan’s first wine was Recioto, even before they produced a dry Soave. In 1999, the family acquired another winery in Valpolicella and began making red wine in addition to Soave.

Pieropan does not buy any grapes; all of their wines are produced from estate-grown grapes. In 2011, Pieropan became certified organic for their Valpolicella and Amarone. They are in their second year of organic certification for Soave.

Ninety-five percent of Soave is produced by large production wineries. At just 400,000 bottles per year, Pieropan is one of the 5% of small producers in Soave. Pieropan bottles their wines under both screw cap and cork, depending on the market.

2012 Pieropan Soave Classico (Soave Classico DOC, Italy): 85% Garganega and 15% Trebbiano di Soave. Pale straw yellow. Nice nose with citrus, lime, and pineapple aromas. Citrus, almond, and floral notes come through on the palate. Dry and light-bodied with fresh, crisp acidity, and a long finish.
Quality: 3.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $13-15

2011 Pieropan Calvarino (Soave Classico DOC, Italy): 70% Garganega and 30% Trebbiano di Soave. Pale, straw yellow. Beautiful nose with floral notes, almond aromas, and minerality. Pear, apricot, apple, and floral notes come through on the palate. Dry and light to medium-bodied with crisp acidity. Well-balanced with a long, fresh finish. A good food wine.
Quality: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $23-27

2011 Pieropan La Rocca (Soave Classico DOC, Italy): 100% Garganega. Medium golden yellow. Aromatic with oak, minerality, pear, apple, and almond aromas and flavors. Medium-bodied with lively acidity. Well-balanced with a long, rich finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 3 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $23-27

2010 Pieropan Ruberpan (Valpolicella Superiore DOC, Italy): 60% Corvina Veronese, 30% Corinone and Croatina Veronese, and 5% from old traditional Valpolicella varieties. Medium ruby red. Nice nose with bright red fruit and spice box aromas. Red fruit, white pepper, and spice come through on the palate. Medium to full-bodied with crisp acidity and medium tannins. Well-balanced with a very long finish.
Quality: 4 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 4 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $23-27

2008 Pieropan Le Colombare (Recioto di Soave DOCG, Italy): 100% Garganega. Medium gold color. Beautiful nose with dried apricot, honey, and orange peel aromas and flavors. Medium-bodied and sweet but not cloying. Well-balanced with good complexity and a long, lingering finish.
Quality: 4.5 stars (out of 5)
QPR: 5 bangs for your buck (out of 5)
Suggested Retail Price: $40 [500ml]

Filed under: Dessert Wine, Five-Bangs For Your Buck Wines, Garganega, Italian Wine, Red Wine, White Wine, Wine Travel, Wines Over $25, Wines Under $15, Wines Under $20, Wines Under $25

Reader's Comments

  1. Hal | September 6th, 2013 at 9:05 am

    Are these wines available locally in Seattle? Thank you

  2. Kori | September 7th, 2013 at 10:47 pm

    According to Wine-Searcher.com, Mad Wine carries some Pieropan wines. Mad Wine is affiliated with Esquin Wine Merchants. Chances are Esquin either carries them in the store or could get them for you. Cheers!