Tenuta di Aglaea Nerello Mascalese 2014
SPECIAL DOZEN BUY. From Mt Etna in Sicily, juicy, high toned red fruited savoury red.
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“The essence of Etna.”
Tenuta Aglaea (formerly under the Paolo Caciorgna label) is a tiny estate on the North side of Mt Etna in Sicily, Italy covering only 1.8 hectares across three vineyard sites; the miniscule and excellent vineyard Bocca d’Orzo (.3 ha) in the zone of Randazzo combined with Passo Cannone (1 ha) and Santo Spirito (.5 ha) in the zone of Passopisciaro. A new vineyard has also been replanted (Passo Cannone) and will be in full production in 2019. Owned by longtime wine professional Anne-Louise Mikkelssen the estate is all about meticulous attention to detail and her philosophy of having the wines be a faithful expression of the terroir with organic practices in the vineyard. Since the departure of her one-time partner and winemaker Paolo Caciorgna, the winemaking responsibilities are now in the hands of one of Sicily’s best and brightest in Nicola Centonze (named Sicily’s best winemaker). The 2014’s are the first under his tenure and they are perhaps even better renditions of the wine than ever before.
From the winemaker … “Aglaea is name of the youngest of the Three Graces – the three sisters and daughters of God Zeus. The wine ‘Aglaea’ is the ‘youngster’ in my portfolio, and made from grapes of both old and young vines. It is bright cherry red. Dried herbs and minerals make up the gentle perfumes, while on the palate good acidity and hints of dry cherries capture the senses. A light savoury mouthfeel lingers towards the end.”
Nerello is considered most likely to be an indigenous Sicilian varietal with unique characteristics, and is genuinely capable of expressing its background. It ripens late and slowly – how slow depends on the altitude that automatically provides for a cooler climate hence longer maturation period. The consequence is a grape that can offer a very distinctive and elegant nose – a very refined and aromatic profile all together.”
This is their entry level Nerello Mascalese and what a ripper it is! Juicy, high toned red fruits, some black cherry, hint of dried herbs and more-ish minerality … this extraordinary grape, indigenous to Sicily’s Mt Etna reminds me of Pinot Noir but with a touch more savoury minerality no doubt from the volcanic soils.
RRP $40 *SPECIAL DOZEN BUY .. $31.50 when you buy 12 of this wine*
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