Etna Red Wines seminar
Some of the best producers of wines, a sommelier and an enologist led a fascinating and entertaining discussion today in front of a public that came to learn something about the red wines of Etna. This meeting is a second edition of a series that are planned also for the future to bring the knowledge about a gold medal product of Etna to the general public. As the enologist Pietro di Giovanni was trying to concise the information about the production of the red wines on the unique and fascinating territory of Etna volcano, Camillo Privitera, the president of Italian Sommelier Association in Sicily and the editor of EnoNews.it took over to teach the tasting techniques while we tasted some of the best vintage wines of Etna.
The tasting started with a bottle of Quantico Etna Rosso 2011 presented by Pietro di Giovanni, of his own production, the youngest but definitely interesting. Quantico is a natural wine produced without the addition of sulfates. ‘Not without defects but that’s the way I want it’ was the comment of the winemaker himself, while Salvatore Geraci, one of the biggest celebrities on sicilian wine planet broke in by commenting that he found it surprising that the relatively young wine had the secondary and tertiary hints specific to Etna, the ones of fumè and flint.
The second wine was the much appreciated Erse Rosso 2009 Tenuta di Fessina. Product of two ‘incomers’ from Toscany, Silvia Maestrelli the winery owner and Federico Curtaz the winemaker (also for Gaja) who came to the locality of Rovitello on Etna attracted by its unique character, bringing their enormous experience in winemaking from somewhere else but respectful to the territory and concentrated on typicity! Erse tasted fresh, unoaked, fruity. It tasted of Nerello Mascalese!
The third wine tasted was Puritani 2008 by Valenti who introduced the wine himself. Although made from the same variety of grapes and produced not far from Rovitello, in Passopisciaro, it tasted completely different than the two previous wines. The terror on Etna is particular also because of its huge diversity which is due to the fact that the vineyards grow at different altitudes and on different soils. That particular tasting was it’s perfect demonstration!
The fourth wine came from a slightly different part of Etna, not far from the stable in which we gathered to taste it. The fourth wine was the proof that Etna is a territory that can produce wines that can age well. The fourth wine was Benanti Serra della Contessa 2003 . The fourth wine was a blast! It was served and introduced by Antonio Benanti himself. We felt lucky to be able to taste the wine of that ‘historic’ winery 🙂
The tasting closed with a Pinot Noir 2011 by a new winery La Gelsomina. It was interesting to taste the wine made of a ‘foreign’ variety of grape grown on Etna and to know that such an option is also possible.
Big thanks to Giovanni Valenti, Pietro and Gina di Giovanni, Antonio Benanti, Salvatore Geraci and Camillo Privitera for their lesson!
Big thanks to Tenuta di Fessina, Quantico, La Gelsomina, Benanti and Valenti wineries for their wines!
Big thanks to Ricardo and Alessandro di Bella for the location!
Big thanks to our lovely guests for coming!