Lamoresca, Rosso, 2017

$36.99

A selection of the best grapes from Filippo's farm, it is a roughly even split of Nero d'Avola and Frappato. The two grapes seem to have a natural affinity with one another, and although the most structured of these new releases, it comes with impeccable balance and detail. A wine that feels truly Mediterranean. Its sunshine, fruits and herbs brighten up these darkest of days.

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Lamoresca

Frank Cornelissen, Etna's natural wine legend, happens to come from Belgium. And then there is Filippo Rizzo, the man who opened one of the world’s first non-Parisian natural wine bars...in Belgium! After a bit, he moved back to his native Sicily, where he befriended Cornelissen and set out to make his own wines at Lamoresca.

Rizzo went looking a little south of Etna. He found some old vines and olive trees at about 450 meters above sea level, not far from Vittoria (of Occhipinti and COS fame) but quite a few miles from any other operating winery. While reclaiming and reviving the old Frappatto and Nero d'Avola vines, he made wine at Cornelissen’s, learning all of Frank’s secretes for attaining purity without sulfur.

Now Rizzo applies those lessons successfully at Lamoresca. The approach is extreme. There is no sulphur, of course (not even at bottling), and farming is completely natural. Nor is there temperature control—a possibility this far south only because of the cool mountain air and the breeze from the nearby Mediterranean.

Despite the hands-off approach, Rizzi eschews the “natural” label. Too much natural wine, he contends, tastes the same. His aim is to make something singular and representative of his own remote plot of land.

He has succeeded. They are a little more blue- and black-fruited than Frank’s wines, and a little fresher and airier than Occhipinti's. If Frank’s wines echo the wines of Piedmont, Rizzi’s are a touch closer to the Northern Rhone. But mostly they are just themselves: pure, delicious and self-confident.

Details

  • Country

    Italy

  • Region

    Sicily

  • Grape Variety

    Frappato , Nero D'Avola

  • Vintage

    2017

  • Size

    750ml

  • Farming Practice

    Sustainable

  • Style

    Earthy , Fruity , Herbaceous

  • Sweetness

    Dry

  • Body

    Medium Bodied