A Tasting Tour Of Italy
We here at the Italian Market thought that it would be fun to create a mixed case of wine from lesser known Italian regions and grapes. We are going to price this with a 30% discount to what you would normally pay, you will also receive a complimentary Italian Market Wine Bag. At the bottom of the page will be a recipe to try.
Taste your way through Italy #4
Sicilian wine history is as long as the history of the island itself. The ancient civilizations of Sicily had been making wine since around the 17th century BCE. It began to boom and gain notoriety with the Greek arrival in the 8th century BCE. After the Greeks the Romans were the next to spread Sicilian wine with them, it was said that Julius Caesars favorite wine was Sicilian. Wine production continued to rise under the Byzantine rule. Under the Muslim influence wine production decreased in the 9th to the 11th centuries. Then in the 13th century the Aragonese took over and wine production improved. In 1773 a Scottish merchant produced the most famous wine from Sicily, Marsala. In the 1800’s and 1900’s Sicily became known as a bulk wine producer and quality wine making was not as important. Recently we have seen great strides made in the quality of wine produced in Sicily.
Principi di Butera Insolia – Our first wine is made in the Caltanisseta region of central Sicily. The Fuedo Principi di Butera estate dates back to around the time of Greek rule in Sicily. The history is interesting but way to long to go into. It is now owned by the Zonin Family. The wine is soft with light citrus flavors and subtle nuances of almond.
Donnafugata Anthilia – Donnafugata means “lady in flight” and refers to the queen Maria Carolina fleeing Naples when Napoleon took over. This wine is composed mainly of Cattarato with a smattering of other grapes blended in depending on the vintage. Anthilia yields flavors of peaches and apricots with a slight citrusy edge. Light bodied this is great with salads and shellfish.
Firriato Etna Bianco – Firriato is an extremely environmentally friendly producer in Sicily. Their vineyards are organically farmed and they have several certifications for green power and reducing of their carbon footprint. They also make wonderful wines. This wine is produced from Carricante and Cattarato grapes grown on the slopes of Mt Etna. This wine is rich and medium to heavy bodied with lovely peach and apricot flavors and a very floral nose.
Firriato Etna Rosso – This is another wine from the vineyards on Mt Etna. The main grape is Nerello Mascalese with a small amount of Nerello Capuccio. Here you will find aromas of violets and cassis with flavors of red cherries, blueberries, and licorice.
Planeta Santa Cecilia – Santa Celilia is made from Nero d’Avola grapes grown on a plot of land that the Planeta family has owned since the 1600’s. Nero d’Avola has become the most popular red grape from Sicily. It produces big fruit forward and somewhat spicy wines. This one is no exception. You will taste some red fruit as well as some plum jam to go along with the peppery spice.
For the fourth installment of this mixed case we have included some items to make a dish to pair with the Etna Rosso. There is a bag Spaghetti, jar of Marinara and a bag of spices and dried ingredients to make a Sicilian flavored pasta. They eat a lot of pasta in Sicily so if you would like to add some sausage to it go ahead.