Originally trained as a stone mason, Tommaso Bussola took over his uncle's Valpolicella estate - with its prized old vineyards in the heart of the Classico zone - in the mid-1980's. While vineyard work came naturally to him, he experimented relentlessly, and absorbed information and ideas from every source available. By the late nineties, his style had matured, and his wines had become world-famous for their incredible intensity of fruit.
The key is the age of the vines and the low-yielding ancient clones: Corvinone (giving the wine depth), Corvina Grossa and Rondinella. Small percentages of old vine Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Dindarella and Pindara round out the cepage, along with new experiments like Teroldego. Tommaso produces two levels of wine; 'TB' are his finest, made from ruthless selection from his best sites, and 'Classico' rate near the summit of the Valpolicella pyramid. All of the production comes from estate fruit.
"Actually, all of Bussola's 2004 Amarones are striking, but the Vigneto Alto left me almost speechless: Bussola's 2004 Amarone Della Valpolicella Classico Vigneto Alto TB is a stunning wine of profound dimensions. It reveals surreal detail in its well-delineated ripe dark fruit, licorice, smoke and tar. Though medium in body, this Amarone possesses awesome balance and polish. I found it awfully hard to put my glass down. It is extremely rare to encounter an Amarone that balances depth with clarity to this degree of profoundness. Needless to say, this wine is not to be missed. The Vigneto Alto spent 30 months in 500 liter French oak barrels, 100% new. It is one of the most breathtaking Amarones I have ever tasted." -Antonio Galloni, Wine Advocate
From Gambero Rosso 2012
"The Bussola family’s winery was one of the first to eschew entry-level products in the early 1990s, as international interest in the red wines of Valpolicella suddenly boomed. Over 20 years have passed since then but time has done nothing to diminish the passion of Tommaso and his wife Daniela for their work. What has changed, however, is the winery, which has been extended and now has facilities for long aging, The extended vineyard holding with plots at higher elevations, and the increasing contribution of sons Paolo and Giuseppe, who are bringing new energy and stimulus for growth."
Wine Advocate 2013
"The Bussola family has been producing top-notch Amarone for decades. In a truly touching family tradition, some of the older wines are named “BG” after uncle Giuseppe Bussola who founded the estate and adopted a traditional winemaking style. Recent expressions are named “TB” after Tommaso Bussola who is responsible for winemaking since 1983 and represents a modernist style. This flight of new releases, particularly the trio of 2007 Amarones, is exceptional. Tommaso’s sons Paolo and Giuseppe have both recently joined the winemaking efforts."