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Topping up an Amarone

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Harbrook

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Hi, I will soon be racking my wine and will need to eliminate the headspace i'm going to have in the carboy.
I was going to buy some marbles and do it that way, but I'm a little nervous about them cracking the bottom of the carboy, Is this something to be worried about?
The other option I am considering and favour at the moment, is topping up with a similar wine, Only problem is that I'm making an Amarone and it's really expensive to buy that commercially here. Is there another Similar wine to an Amarone that I could use to top up with that is more affordable??
I was considering a Ripasso, Would that be good?
many thanks in advance for you help!
 

dcbrown73

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Yep, it's a toughie.

I use this one. 2010 Terre di Bo Amarone della Valpolicella Classico It's actually pretty good and I can get it for about $31 a bottle vs $50-$60 for some other good ones. There are a few other $30ish bottles, but the one I listed is the best I've found in my area that isn't quite the bankbreaker like the normal fair.

As for other options, I will give way to other winemakers as this years was my first Amarone.

 

Harbrook

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Yep, it's a toughie.

I use this one. 2010 Terre di Bo Amarone della Valpolicella Classico It's actually pretty good and I can get it for about $31 a bottle vs $50-$60 for some other good ones. There are a few other $30ish bottles, but the one I listed is the best I've found in my area that isn't quite the bankbreaker like the normal fair.

As for other options, I will give way to other winemakers as this years was my first Amarone.
Thanks for the reply, Very nice wine, but what about Ripasso, Is this a good alternative?
 

brewbush

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If you have an allinone pump you could use the headspace eliminator.

Otherwise. I have used marbles but I found you need a significant amount to raise the level.

I would use the wines mentioned to top up or rack down to smaller carboys.
 

zalai

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Yes I would use a small amount of Ripasso , but a good one . Don't look for a cheapest one .:b
 

sour_grapes

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IMHO, Ripasso would be the best choice. However, you probably only need to add a few percent. I doubt that you would be able to tell if you added a Cab Sauv. or Sangiovese or what have you. You could try a taste-test, where you take a glass of pure amarone, and a second glass where you add a tablespoon (or whatever your appropriate fraction is) of the other wine, and see if you can tell.
 

Arne

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IMHO, Ripasso would be the best choice. However, you probably only need to add a few percent. I doubt that you would be able to tell if you added a Cab Sauv. or Sangiovese or what have you. You could try a taste-test, where you take a glass of pure amarone, and a second glass where you add a tablespoon (or whatever your appropriate fraction is) of the other wine, and see if you can tell.
Kind of reminds me of going to the eye doctor. This or this? This or this? Taste testing, one of my favorite parts of winemaking. :h Arne.
 

Boatboy24

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Agree on the Valpolicella Ripasso. Tommasi is a good one, but even that is over $20. In the absence of that, a good Sangiovese. If you have a Trader Joe's nearby, they have Amarone for as little at $18/bottle. It won't compare to a $50 Amarone, but it is pretty darn enjoyable on its own and certainly worthy of using as a top-up wine.
 

StBlGT

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Yes, Ripasso is a good alternative, no doubt. It's like a little baby Amarone. Sure beats $50 a bottle. You can probably get a decent Ripasso for $15-$20.
 

Floandgary

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All great suggestions. You have to ask yourself,,,, "are my taste buds good enough??? Well ARE they p--k???" HaHaHa!!
So would the headspace be great enough that a smaller vessel would be the best option??
 

dcbrown73

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All great suggestions. You have to ask yourself,,,, "are my taste buds good enough??? Well ARE they p--k???" HaHaHa!!
So would the headspace be great enough that a smaller vessel would be the best option??
Or multiple smaller vessels. I have 6, 3, and 1 gallon carboys for this reason.

If I'm down quite a bit in a six gallon, I will move it to (1) 3, and (2) 1 gallon carboys. That said, I try to ensure I'm done with any tweaking of the wine before I do this to keep the wine consistent across all vessels, though if you measure correctly, you should be okay anyhow.
 

Stevew1

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How much wine will you add to top off? I would add any full bodied homemade red. That small amount will not effect the flavor.
 

Spikedlemon

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All great suggestions. You have to ask yourself,,,, "are my taste buds good enough??? Well ARE they p--k???" HaHaHa!!
So would the headspace be great enough that a smaller vessel would be the best option??
That'd be my thought.

Half a bottle of a similar red wine into a 6gal carboy is would be only a 1.6% difference. Consider this to be less than the value that most wine jurisdictions would even need to worry about before it would need to be claimed of a varietal wine.

Wine Folly considers Carmenere to be similar as Corvina (the principal grape in Amarone/Valpolcella) but, to my taste buds, a Tempranillo, Sangiovese or a French Malbec would go well too.

Knowing me, though, I'd add a bottle of Merlot or Zinfandel because I have it on-hand.
 

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