From the Wine Shop
Benanti, Etna Rosso “Rovittello” Sicily, Italy 2014 (750mL)
Snaking across the north slope of Mount Etna, through towns such as Randazzo, Passopisciaro, and Rovittello, state route 120 is Etna’s answer to Burgundy’s famed Route de Grands Crus. And while vineyards and wine have existed here since ancient times, the modern era of Etnean wine has been shaped by families like the Benantis—and wines like their “Rovittello” bottling. This is the original ‘Grand Cru’ red of this born-again wine mecca and still the reference point for old-vine Nerello Mascalese grown in Etna’s black volcanic soils.
Comprised of 90% Nerello Mascalese and 10% Nerello Cappuccio harvested in the second half of October (incredibly late by Sicilian standards), the 2014 “Rovittello” Etna Rosso was aged a little over a year in 225-liter oak casks (a mix of used and new) and then another year in bottle before release. Now with more bottle age behind it, the wine is in its sweet spot: In the glass, it’s a reflective ruby red moving to garnet and a touch of orange at the rim, with a heady nose of ripe red and black cherry, currants, raspberry, wet violets and rose, sandalwood, wild herbs, crushed rocks, and a touch of vanilla. It is medium-plus in body with a lush, velvety texture and a long, aromatic finish. It’s a very substantial red with a still-firm, fine-grained tannic underpinning that should support further aging—there’s still 5-10 years in it if you decide to cellar some, but start now and enjoy it over the next few years.
- Sub-RegionEtna DOC
- BlendNerello Mascalese 90%, Nerello Cappuccio 10%
- Temp.Serve at 60° F
- GlasswareBurgundy Stems
- Decanting30 Minutes
- PairingPasta alla Norma
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Through the grapevine
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