Guide to Mediterranean Wines
Discover Beautiful Wines from the Mediterranean
3 Great Mediterranean Region Wines
Etna Rosso in Sicily
Active volcanoes don't seem like the best place to grow grapes, but the effort is certainly worth it with modern day Etna Rosso wines. Made with indigenous grapes trained on gnarly bush vines on the northern slopes of Mount Etna's black volcanic soils, these wines exude a sense of place like no other.
Grapes: 80% Nerello Mascalese, 20% Nerello Cappuccio
Region: Mount Etna, Sicily
About: Stainless steel fermentation and maturation gives freshness to this otherwise well structured wine. With the "coolness" of the molten hot extreme growing area and interesting native grapes, it's no wonder volcanic wines are all the rage!
Tastes like: bing cherry · stewed strawberry · potting soil · black tea · stone · silky tannins
Craveable: rosemary lamb chops · spaghetti and meatballs · stuffed mushroomsSangiovese in Tuscany, Italy
Vino Nobile di Montepulciano in Tuscany
Tuscany is nearly synonymous with Sangiovese, a wine that pairs amazingly well with the region's famed Bistecca alla Fiorentina and Wild Boar Ragu. This Vino Nobile de Montepulciano is 100% Sangiovese and, like other wines from this subregion, is said to combine the perfume of Chianti with the power and structure of a Brunello.
Grapes: 100% Sangiovese
Region: Tuscany, Italy
About: Certified organic and biodynamic viticulture showcases this classic grape from a classic producer in a classic region. 18 months in large Slavonian oak casks adds depth to the ripe Sangiovese fruit. Enjoy it best with rich cuisine to balance sturdy tannins.
Tastes like: dark cherry · plum · thyme · violet · coffee bean · sandalwood
Craveable: ribeye steak · rich meat or mushroom ragu · grilled sausage
Wow: 93pts Wine Enthusiast
Assyrtiko in Santorini, Greece
Special training methods (see below), insanely old vines (many well over 100 years old) and local, indigenous grapes add to the unique appeal of the wines of Santorini. Assyrtiko, the region's pride, is made into both sweet wines and this refreshingly crisp and dry example that makes a perfect pairing to the local cuisine: seafood!
Grapes: 90% Assyrtiko, 5% Aidani, 5% Athiri
Region: Santorini, Greece
About: Cool, stainless steel fermentation keeps the aromatics alive in this refreshing white. ~80yr old vines help bring out depth and concentration. Characteristic flinty notes in the Assyrtiko grape add character and interest. Coming from Santorini, it's no surprise this wine is a seafood-pairing dream.
Tastes like: lemon · green apple · lemongrass · white peach · ashy stone · smoke/flint
Craveable: halibut · Greek salad · scallops · light pasta dishes · grilled haloumi cheese · herbed (oregano) chicken breast
That's a Grape Vine?
Santorini may be stunningly beautiful, but it's no easy place to grow grapes. With next to no precipitation, volcanic and sandy, nutrient-poor soils and crazy high winds, vines must be trained using a special technique called, "kouloura" or "basket vine." Training the vines very low to the ground provides protection from fierce gusts and allows what little rainfall there is to be captured. The yields are shockingly low and the vineyard work very labor-intensive, making the wines all the more special.
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