Category Archives: Sicily

Feudo Ramaddini 2014 Nero D’Avola IGT

100% Nero D’ Avola (could have some Syrah in it)

Imported by Wine Appellations, LTD Mill Valley, CA

$2.99 at San Diego (Downtown), CA store on 3 June

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The wine reminds me a lot of a simple, juicy Shiraz or even cheap Petite Sirah and not in a bad way. This is a simple, approachable, everyday wine with enough acid and tannin to balance the juiciness of the fruit that Nero is known for without it being flabby (it’s not *that* sweet) and leaves long, dark red legs in the glass. It’s fairly one dimensional but it’s also fairly intense due to the tannins but without the mouthfeel to match and with dark, ripe berries predominantly on the nose and on the palate. I don’t get any oak. It’d be a decent choice for a weeknight wine balancing out a fatty ribeye or other red meat or a party wine where BBQ is being served. It’s certainly not trying to be anything it isn’t.

It’s nothing I would recommend you go out of the way for since it drinks similarly to $8-10 Neros I’ve had, but it’s $2.99 Nero and drinkable at that.

Seforha 2012 Nero D’Avola

Terre Siciliane IGT, Italy; 13% ABV
imported by Epic Wines, Capitola, CA
$4 at the Richmond, CA, store around 20 Nov

Seforha_2012_NeroDAvolaI have previously not thought much of wines made from Nero D’Avola, finding them pleasant enough, but rather simply fruity.  I thought I’d try this one, though, because it shared its importer with the Rosso Fuoco Negroamaro – Primitivo that I liked a lot.  This is indeed much more interesting than any Nero D’Avola I’ve had previously.

On the first night, I thought the wine needed about an hour in a decanter to show dark red cherry / raspberry, a nice complex of funk / earth / stem / prune, and kirsch / black cherry.  Although I’m not wild about it, for the price, this wine is substantial and complex enough to merit a Thumbs Up.

The second half, stored in a half bottle and stoppered with very little air, was very similar.  It was probably a little more smoothed out, maybe a little better overall.

2004 Iperion

from Feudo Principi di Butera, Sicilia IGT, Italy
70% Nero d’Avola, 20% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Sauvignon; 13% ABV
$5 at the Oakland, CA, store on 16 March

Butera_2004_IperionI thought this looked potentially exciting.  However, right upon opening, the cork alerted me that something was likely amiss.  It was wet about half the way up, and its smell was quite oxidized.  A small taste confirmed that my bottle, at least, was pretty much sherry.  I will be taking it back.  Did anyone get a good bottle of this?

L’ Isola dei Profumi 2012 Catarratto – Grecanico

Terre Siciliane IGT, Italy
60% Catarrato, 40% Grecanico; 12% ABV
$5 at the Berkeley, CA, store on 17 Sept

LIsolaDeiProfumi_2012_CatarGrecThis wine was very interesting!  On the first night, I thought it was drinkable at best.  It seemed to have just rather basic flavors of pear and green apple candy, with perhaps some aspirin.

On the second night, however, it was really pretty good, showing nicely balanced and integrated yellow fruit with a tinge of green: flowers, apple, pear, melon, grapefruit, creamy vanilla.

On the third night, to my astonishment, it was positively graceful, with the fruit smooth and supple, delicately but well flavored, with nice medium body.

This well balanced wine was not at all what I expected of a Sicilian white.  I thought it might be very ripe, maybe even flabby (too little acid).  However, I just noticed that one of the grapes, Grecanico, is the same as the Garganega in whites from the Veneto area (for example) in northeast Italy.  It does indeed seem a little familiar now.  Anyway… Thumbs Up!