Here’s another one that could easily be mistaken for a pinot. It’s a blend of nerello mascalese (95%) and nerello cappuccio, both grapes of the Etna DOC in Sicily.

I always go for reds with a special sort of purity of fruit expression (ie, wines whose flavours are clearly defined, that aren’t oak-aged or full of sulphur or brett, such as the COS Pithos Rosso). Unmistakably the Setteporte Etna Rosso has that.

The grapes are grown 650-800m up the south-facing slope of Etna, where the volcanic soil, high altitude and Mediterranean sun create a unique habitat for intriguing, elegant and very, very drinkable wines.

It’s limpid in the glass, invigorating on the nose and on the palate, with mouthwatering acidity, cherry and wild strawberry fruit, and a smoky mineral note that seems to be a special characteristic of nerello macalese when grow on the slopes of Etna.

There’s no oak used here (though there is on the equally limpid and delicious Etna Rosso 100% nerello mascalese, which costs about a tenner more, but still worth the splurge), just a vibrant expression of the grapes and the terroir.

Cheers to The Sampler for uncovering this one. Please keep your Italian shelf well stocked.




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