Murgo, Metodo Classico Brut Rosé
Murgo, Metodo Classico Brut Rosé

Murgo, Metodo Classico Brut Rosé

Sicily, Italy 2020 (750mL)
Regular price$32.00
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Murgo, Metodo Classico Brut Rosé

Very few wines in the world can match Murgo Brut Rosé’s melding of story, value, and transcendent quality. I’m not exaggerating—this Champagne-method sparkler from the slopes of Sicily’s Mount Etna is an astounding feat.

We’ve offered it so many times that I’ve run out of superlatives, but that’s not going to stop us from featuring the latest vintage release because there’s always need for a rosé sparkler that over-delivers in such dramatic fashion. Aged a full two years on lees before bottling and vintage-dated to boot, this isn’t just made like Champagne, it competes with Champagne on a qualitative level, despite being priced for wedding-scale consumption. If you have any kind of event on the horizon for which a sparkling wine is needed in quantity, this is without question the savviest purchase you could make. But I’ll do you one better: Put this next to rosé Champagne and it doesn’t suffer by comparison. That’s essentially unheard-of at this price point, which is why Murgo has been a SommSelect staple for years. “Over-delivers” doesn’t begin to do it justice!

What’s also interesting to note about the Murgo sparklers is that they have a long track record of excellence. As we’ve noted in previous offers, the Scammaca del Murgo family is one of the longest-tenured wine producers on Mount Etna. Baron Emanuele Scammaca del Murgo, a longtime Italian diplomat, decided to re-dedicate his family’s property to wine production back in 1981, a time when Etna wine was little talked-about—most of what was produced from the ancient vineyards here was sold to cooperatives for bulk wine. In the eighties, there were maybe a half-dozen serious commercial producers in the area, but of course it’s been a gold rush since then; these days there are well over 100 producers of Etna wine, with larger Sicilian wine concerns and others from outside the zone clamoring to get a piece of the action.

The still-erupting Etna volcano is among the few pockets of Europe untouched by phylloxera, and its soils of black ash and pumice stone are planted mostly with old, head-trained bush vines called alberelli (“little trees”). Vineyard altitudes on the volcano reach up to 1,000 meters, making it some of the highest-elevation viticulture in Europe and the only ‘cool’ region of Sicily, which otherwise has more in common with North Africa than much of mainland Italy when it comes to climate. The local Nerello Mascalese grape, the driving force of Etna reds, has rightly invited comparisons to Pinot Noir from Burgundy, and, as expressed in sparkling form, it delivers a great mix of bright fruit and smoky savor.

Sourcing 100% Nerello Mascalese from their high-altitude vineyards in Zafferana Etnea, on the eastern slopes of the volcano—a less populous area of wine production compared to the more densely planted north slope—the Murgos macerate the grapes on their skins for about 24 hours to extract the delicate salmon-pink color, then produce the wine in the exact same manner as Champagne (método classico is the Italian term for ‘Champagne method,’ wherein the second fermentation is carried out in the bottle). This wine was aged on its lees (the spent yeast cells that collect in the neck of the bottle) for two years before it was disgorged and re-corked for sale. 

Murgo’s Brut Rosé is always a vintage-dated wine, and the 2020 shows off lots of fruit character in what was described as a hot, ripe harvest. The color is a textbook pale salmon-pink with coppery highlights, and the aromas mix dried cherry, red currant, strawberry coulis, melon, pink peppercorn, and a whiff of smoke. Perhaps it’s the volcanic soil but there’s a pronounced mineral savor here, especially on the finish, and taut structure—not only is it an exceptionally refreshing apéritif to sip with some prosciutto and melon, it would absolutely stand in for rosé Champagne at the dinner table. Serve this in all-purpose white wine stems or open-mouthed flutes at 40-45 degrees, at any point in a meal, really: It would be off-the-charts good with the attached salmon puffs recipe, so maybe start with that. Many more opportunities await!

Murgo, Metodo Classico Brut Rosé


Northwestern Italy


Italy’s Piedmont region is really a wine “nation”unto itself, producing world-class renditions of every type of wine imaginable: red, white, sparkling, name it! However, many wine lovers fixate on the region’s most famous appellations—Barolo and Barbaresco—and the inimitable native red that powers these wines:Nebbiolo.



The area known as “Chianti” covers a major chunk of Central Tuscany, from Pisa to Florence to Siena to Arezzo—and beyond. Any wine with “Chianti” in its name is going to contain somewhere between 70% to 100% Sangiovese, and there are eight geographically specific sub-regions under the broader Chianti umbrella.

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