Passito Method

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An Italian term used to describe a method of making sweet wines. The term is also used to describe the actual wine that is made using the Passito Method.

Fresh grapes are partially dried on mats or by hanging them in bunches. The producer either allows them to dry directly in the sun or may place them in a cool, ventilated room. The amount of time the grapes are dried is dependent on the technique used. Time required can vary from several weeks to several months.

The process of drying removes the water content of the grapes while concentrating sugar and flavor content. The grapes are then crushed and fermentation begins.

If the process of fermentation stops, either naturally or by human intervention, the wine is left with residual sugar. The resulting wine is a Recioto. If the fermentation process continues, the resulting wine is dry. The dry wine is an Amarone, which means strongly bitter.

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