The wine

The history of wine is essentially linked to the development of earlier cultures. The product of the vine was the drink of the gods. The Greek god Dionysus or his Roman counterpart Bacchus were dedicated to wine in mythology. In other cultures, wine was a symbol of blood spilled in the battle against the gods. It was often used as a burial object.

Our wines

We attach great importance to the selection of our wines. Before we add a wine to our range, we make a long selection and test it extensively with our wine sommelier.

It is in our interest to support smaller, possibly still unknown companies. We want to help and promote these small producers as well as offer our customers special wines, rarities, which you would otherwise not find with us.

You can find the usual wines of great producers everywhere. With us you will find something special.

In order to find these wines for you, we travel to the producers and select the wines on site that we think you will like.

We are looking for these wines in Sicily and partly through our wine sommelier also in Greece so that we always have new wines in our range.

 

 

Viticulture in Sicily

Viticulture in Sicily With 112,700 hectares of vineyards, it is the largest wine region in Italy. These include besides Sicily also the island of Pantelleria and the Aeolian Islands. In quality viticulture Sicily is only 9th in the national ranking with 11,985 hectares. There are 23 DOC wines in Sicily andthere are excellent country wines (IGTs). A special feature is the establishment of the DOC Sicily (since the wine year 2012), which includes the area of the entire island and is allowed to appear on the label as the addition “Sicilia”. In this way, the Sicilian origin can also be made clear in the less well-known DOC appellations.

The best-known manufacturers include Corvo and Regaleali. However, the majority of the winegrowers remain nameless. Only a quarter of the total production is bottled on the island. Many of the 50 cooperatives often do not have their own bottling plants, so that the Sicilian wines are ultimately not bottled as wines from Sicily. Despite the good potential, the Sicilian recognized Winegrowers later than those on the mainland have the chances of growing quality wines, which is therefore still on the rise.

Sicily is the largest wine-growing region in Italy, but until the mid-1990s the island was primarily known abroad for the alcohol-fortified sweet wine Marsala. After initially focusing on the cultivation of international grape varieties, the winemakers later rediscovered local grape varieties, especially Nero d’Avola. Today it is the most important and best-known wine on the island in many markets.

 

A positive development can be expected for the future. The general site conditions in Sicily are very good for wine. There are already individual, small productions of less well-known regional grape varieties that should arouse the interest of wine lovers. Accordingly, their sticks are already being increased and areas are planted with them.

The 23 regions with controlled designation of origin (DOC) are spread far apart, mainly on the western end, the northeast with the high-altitude cultivation aroundMount Etna, its climates and soils are so complex that they alone produce very different types of wine. The south, on the other hand, is hot and African.

Wine types

Despite the hot and dry climate in Sicily, there is significantly more white wine than red wine. This is due to the Marsala, which historically dominated the Sicilian wine market. Since the mid-1990s, however, the proportion of red wine has grown, also because the local and newly arrived wineries have planted international varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon,Merlot and Syrah . These new plantings are almost all in the west of the island within reach of the capital Palermo.

VARIETY VINE CHARACTERISTICS
white wine

Catarratto

The Catarratto grape, the main ingredient in marsala, is abundant. Many winemakers are now growing dry wines. The Catarratto variety, for example, has large, high-yielding areas under cultivation. Sicily, especially the DOCEtna region produces more of it than the white wine regions of South Tyrol, Trentino and Friuli together. There are no current statistical surveys. It is estimated that there are around 40,000 hectares under Catarratto vines. With the help of the cool ones that serve the fruit fermentation the Catarratto makes a fruity white wine. In general, wines from hot regions – especially from the less noble local varieties – mature faster than others. The great heat, which was still an advantage for the Marsala, is not very beneficial for modern white wine production. They make the fragile fruit aromas and the acid wear down on the vine.
white wine Grillo On the other hand, the former Marsala grape variety Grillo tolerates quite well the heat, which is why this dry white wine was successfully positioned in the market by some wineries. Other wineries prefer to cooperate Ansonica (synonym Insolia) or the Grecanico.
white wine

Moscato di Pantelleria or Malvasia delle Lipari

Sicily holds for the sweet wine fraction with the Moscato di Pantelleria, the Moscato di Noto and the Malvasia delle Lipari three highly aromatic white dessert wines ready. Individual winegrowers cultivate this cultural asset of the south with success, but apart from the Moscato di Pantelleria, hardly anyone achieves production figures that would allow it to be marketed beyond the region.
Red wine

Cerasuolo di Vittoria

Near Ragusa and the cityof Vittoria is the Cerasuolo di Vittoria produced – named after the cherry-red color of the young wine. It is a distinctive, fruity red wine with a pleasant acidity. It is made from the grape varieties Nero d’Avola (at least 50 … 70%) and Frappato (at most 30 … 50%). The frappato in particular gives this wine with its present acidity an appealing play of fruit and the elegance that so many red wines from the south lack. The soil plays its part in this: red, iron-containing sand on a limestone bed that begins at a depth of 30 to 40 cm. In combination with the cooling through the Monte Iblei range of hills, the Nero d’Avola grape variety is fresher and more mineral than in the west of the island. So far, however, hardly any wine investor has ventured into the somewhat remote southeast of the island.
Red wine

Etna Rosso

Already the Greek immigrants planted on the slopes of the volcano Wine. The agricultural priorities then shifted in modern times to the detriment of viticulture on the etna. Catania Vineyards that were among the largest on the island. Due to the Europe-wide Phylloxera plague at the beginning of the 20th century, viticulture also came to a standstill on the volcano, so that it had to develop from scratch. A trip to the up to 3350 meter high craters of Mount Etna is the attraction in eastern Sicily. Very different ones are lined up around the volcano terroirsi.e. site conditions, which in turn lead to very diverse wines. The region owes its fertile soil to its volcanic rock, which is covered with vegetable fields, olive groves and citrus plantations. Viticulture on Etna is also old, but development is currently dynamic. The current renaissance of viticulture on Mount Etna is of course still in its infancy. Common European and Sicilian vines have a hard time in the microclimate of the volcano. The Nero d’Avola vine, for example, would not ripen at all on Etna. Because although it simmers deep down in the earth, it is extremely cool on the slopes due to an extreme temperature gradient between day and night and also the altitude. Reading can usually only be done in October. Ergo, one relies on the grape varieties for red wines Nerello Mascalese andNerello Cappucciothat are traditionally at home here, only grow here and have adapted to the harsh conditions. Outside of Sicily, Etna Rosso is still little known. This is because only a few companies rely on high-quality bottled wine and therefore only small quantities come onto the market. Viticulture has to contend with great technical difficulties. The vineyards climb to a height of 900 meters, are partly extremely steep, especially in the southeast, and are usually surrounded by lavishly piled drywall walls made of lava rock. Only in the area of Randazzo and Passopisciaro, a plateau also enables cultivation, but they are mostly very small plots in the barren lava soil. Here as there, the drywall walls protect the precious soil so that it is not washed out by rain and / or carried away by the wind. Such extreme locations and also the Alberello upbringing require a lot of manual work and thus cause high management costs. So it is not surprising that many very interesting steep slopes lie fallow or are overgrown.
Red wine

Nero d’Avola

The success story of Nero d’Avola began in the early 1990s when the newly blossoming Sicilian wine scene discovered the potential of local grape varieties. The career of Nero d’Avola was made possible by some innovative personalities from the Sicilian wine scene who did pioneering work. The name Diego Planeta, President of Cantine Settesoli in since 1973, stands for this development Menfiwhich, with an annual output of around 20 million bottles and a no less large amount of barrel wines, are one of the largest winery cooperatives in Europe. Nero d’Avola is currently considered the most important grape variety in Sicily and is located there on 18,000 hectares of vineyards (2013). Especially about their place of origin Avola and the baroque city of Noto around and in the wider region, the wines exude aromas of cherries, blackberries and plums. In addition, there is a Mediterranean herbal spice, also a little pepper. The wine is also a pleasure slightly chilled in midsummer temperatures. Nero d’Avola has also made its international breakthrough economically because the prices are moderate. The “principe siciliano”, the Sicilian prince, as the locals like to call the grape variety, is currently (2015) the best known and best Sicilian wine.

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