A dark red wine grape variety, Corvina is commonly planted in Veneto, Italy, and is commonly used to produce Valpolicella and Amarone. It's rarely produced as a single varietal, so much so that it's not recognised as a DOC or DOCG style. It's only given an IGT status!
It's most often blended with Rondinella and Molinara for Valpolicella and Amarone. It’s a fairly thick-skinned grape, which certainly adds to the heft for which Amarone is known. However, since it hails from northeastern Italy, most reds are lighter bodied than Amarone, including Corvina-based Valpolicellas and Bardolinas.
On it's own, it produces a light to medium bodied wine with floral red fruits & savory cherry/plum, comparable to Beaujolais Gamay. This makes for perfect pairing with spicy seafood stews or grilled salmon.
Think local Italian food when pairing Corvina, it's made for it really. Antipasti (salami), bruchetta, rich stews or fattier fish dishes are beautiful pairings with this medium bodied low tannin grape from Italy.
Corvina based wines are mostly grown & produced in Veneto, Italy. It's not a commonly known grape, and is more popular based on the regional styles produced by Corvina; Valpolicella, Amarone, and Bardolino.
There's 5 levels of Valpolicella style wines, moving up in complexity of winemaking techniques.
Valpolicella Classico is usually a clean, often steel maturated, with a light & fresh character, perfect for easy drinking
Valpolicella Classico Superior comes with a hint of spice & body comes with the "Superiore" label, with a minimum 1 year aging requirement, often in oak. Expect loads of cherry, cranberry notes, vanilla, clove aromas
Valpolicella Ripasso, often termed as the baby Amarone, it's made by adding partially fermented skins from Amarone to Valpolicella Classico wine & letting it maturate for a while. This adds more flavour, tannins & body, giving you a similar wow factor without the hefty price tag
Amarone della Valpolicella is the king of Valpolicella wines. Dry, bold, fruited, smoky. Perfect with bold foods like braised meats & aged cheeses, the grapes are matured using the Appassimento method, and is aged in oak for a minimum of 2 years. This gives you the rich, round, spiced character. The Amarone style was actually created out of a mistake of making Recioto, when the winemaker forgot to stop the process early enough
Recioto della Valpolicella is one of the rare sweet red wines, the fermentation process used for Amarone is stopped early, leaving the sweetness while still having the balance of dried fruit & chocolate flavours
A lesser known Corvina producing region, they use the same 3 grapes as Valpolicella to produce blends. However, they have a different wine style, and often use more Rondinella grape. This gives it a lighter profile as compared to the Valpolicella wines