Wine Club Newsletter - March 2019
Sicily, Italy, Best Wine Destinations (2017 Wine Enthusiast Magazine)
As you may be aware, Lori and I are guiding our wine tour through Sicily this year. I thought it might be fun to share some information about the wine country there. If you would like to inquire about going with us, we have a couple spaces left at time of printing this. Please email Lori at Lparker@winesellar.com
Sunny Sicily, the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, sits just off the tip of the boot-shaped peninsula of Italy. Dotted with ancient Greek temples and Norman cathedrals built by former invaders, the island has a rich history and multifaceted cultural legacy.
It also boasts miles of pristine beaches, breathtaking scenery and the highest active volcano in Europe, Mount Etna.
On top of those wonders, Sicily makes fantastic wines from native and international grapes. It produces everything from full-bodied reds to vibrant, mineral-driven whites. Pair them with the fantastic local cuisine, and you understand why this is a wine-lover’s paradise.
Sicily’s pristine coastline offers world-class beaches and resorts that provide plenty of outdoor fun. The island also has a number of ancient monuments and archaeological sites. In Agrigento, the Valley of the Temples is a tour of some of the world’s best-preserved Greek temples. It dates to the 5th century BC and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Many producers make sunny renditions from international grapes like Merlot, Syrah, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon, but most firms focus on the island’s native grapes. From the hot plains of Marsala, try Grillo, a crisp and savory white, as well as Marsala, a fortified dessert wine that’s making a comeback. Smooth and juicy Nero d’Avola, at its best in the Noto area, is the island’s flagship red.
From the Vittoria area, don’t miss the polished Cerasuolo di Vittoria or bright Frappato, the perfect summer red. Elegant, mineral-driven reds and whites from the slopes of Mount Etna are among the most exciting wines coming out of Italy.
Celebrated wine producer Alessio Planeta suggests a visit to the northern zone of Mount Etna, where you can walk in the woods and through vineyards. “Of all the stunning views on Etna, a hike up to the small, extinguished volcano of Mojo offers one of the most beautiful landscapes on the big volcano. Heading up to almost 3,300 feet, you’ll find the grands crus, ending at the lava flow from 1991, showing all the great energy of the mountain.”
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