Description 1 of 2

Common synonyms: Corvina Veronese, Cruina, Cassabria

Parentage of the grape: indigenous to Veneto, Italy

History of the grape: There are 6th century written documents by Cassiodoro, a magistrate of Visigoth King Theodorus, describing a sweet wine made from half dried grapes in Verona that is most likely an early version of Amarone or Recioto made from Corvina. “Straw wine,” the process used to make these wines by drying grapes on straw mats before pressing, is a style of wine-making that was passed on from the ancient Greeks. In 643 Lombard King Rotari wrote an edict protecting Corvina and other local grapes from being pulled. Venice became a center of trade during the Byzantine Empire, and Valpolicella (a name that is a likely combination of ancient Greek and Latin meaning “wine from many cellars”) wines made with Corvina (and traditionally Rondinella and Molinara) became a popular export. But subsequent trade embargoes with the Ottomans forced local wine-makers to broaden the scope of local viticulture. Corvina plantings managed to overcome the 19th century Phylloxera crisis fairly quickly and production of the grape continued, though more often in the style of Bardolino, which has Rossignola added to the same grape blend as Amarone and Valpolicella, but is not made from dried grapes. The Amarone process gained resurgence in the 1950s and today, Amarone and Recioto are some of the most sought after wines in the world. 
Characteristics of the grape: light to medium bodied, sour cherry, plum, slightly acidic, leather, violet. The grapes themselves have low tannins but thick skins that make them ideal for drying. 
Regions where the grape currently is important: Veneto, Italy: Valpolicella, Bardolino
Type or types of wines the grape produces: varietal dry red wines, most often blended in Bardolino and Valpolicella dry wines, dried in Amarone and sweet Recioto, passito (juice with leftover solids from Amarone and Recioto is filtered into Valpolicella before further fermentation to add body, complexity and flavor) and sweet sparkling wines. 
– Description from Amanda Schuster

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Description 2 of 2

(aka. Corvina Veronese)

Along with Molinara and Rondinella, Corvina is the varietal responsible for the production of Valpolicella and Bardolino in northeastern Italy. Corvina is generally regarded as the best of these grapes, and is often afforded the best vineyard locations. In its northern Italian homeland, it produces red wines with mild fruity flavor and hints of almond. The grape is most expressive as the main component of Veneto’s full-bodied, powerful and concentrated, dried-grape (Ripasso) red wines of Amarone and its sweeter version, Recioto. In North America, the varietal gets little attention. However, a lone producer in Southern Virginia is using to Corvina to make a traditional Amarone-styled wine.

You earn a living as a personal trainer pumping up Molinara and Rondinella in the Valpolicella arena. But when it comes to high stakes competition, you train alone on the slopes of northern Italy. Your regime is legendary, a training method developed in your homeland known as the Ripasso method. While working through this regime you lay out in the sun and pump up from dawn until dusk. You have achieved a powerful body, however the tanning process has left your skin dried and leathery. – Description from Appellation America (view original content)

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