Almost impenetrable deep ruby. Oak-dominated nose offers plenty of vanilla and sweet spice that push the ripe black cherry and prune aromas into the background. Then more vanilla in the mouth but with bright, juicy acidity and floral lift providing freshness and precision on the long rising finish. As always the Costasera Riserva, a wine dominated by its Oseleta presence (a grape variety that gives tannic, powerful wines), will need plenty of time to round out. A blend of Corvina, Rondinella, Molinara and Oseleta. (15.5% alcohol)
Score: 91+ points -- Vinous
Costasera's slopes face the sunset, making this the best terroir for producing high-quality Amarone in Valpolicella Classico. With a longer day, vines that face Lake Garda bask in reflected light, receiving more sunlight, with soft breezes. Since the 1960s, Masi experts have confirmed the superiority of west-facing sites. To produce this unique Amarone, Masi combines ancient varieties (Corvina, Rondinella and Molinara) and winemaking methods (vinifying grapes semi-dried on racks for 3-4 months) with the latest techniques: bamboo racks in temperature- and humidity-controlled conditions induce natural drying; selective exposure to botrytis cinerea (noble rot); strictly-controlled fermentations through the use of Saccharomyces bayanus, a rare yeast that produces high alcohol. Aged for 24 months, 80% in 40-80 hectoliter Slavonian oak barrels and 20% in small Allier and Slavonian oak barrels (40% new, 30% 1 year old, 30% 2 year old) before a minimum 4 months in bottle.