Twenty-five – in Italian

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‘Etna has become a magnet [sound like a crossword clue] for terroir-conscious wine producers’ because of its volcanic rich soils, the varying aspects and altitude. This comment in The World Atlas of Wine is preceded by the description of Nerello Mascalese as ‘potentially’ of interest. The grape is native to north-east Sicily.

We tried Cottanera’s Diciassettesalme (translated as 25 – referring to the size of vineyard in hectares) 2015 on Sunday. It had been opened two days.

A medium intense ruby in colour, there was obvious signs of alcohol (13.5%). The nose was interesting; perfumed, damsons and slightly sour notes but I thought I detected the faintly bubble-gum aromas of carbonic maceration. Red fruit flavours were present on the palate but tannins dominated; it certainly needed food. I think Richard said it cost £19.99.

Verdict? I would pay half that price for the sake of trying it, but no more.

[Richard: another one from Waitrose Online, indeed at £20, which is an ambitious price for what is a very stylish, well made but ultimately pretty simple wine. I quite liked it and would buy it again if it was around £13.]

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