Wednesday, April 7, 2021

A White Italian Wine From The Shadow Of Mt. Etna

The Cusumano winery - now Under the Terlato umbrella - was started in 2001, when brothers Alberto and Diego Cusumano took over for their father, Francesco.  Winemaker Mario Ronco makes the Cusumano wines entirely from estate grown grapes, from five different territories throughout Sicily, including Alta Mora from Mount Etna.  Diego is the winery's export manager, who spoke for the business during a recent virtual event put on by the Italian wine guide, Gambero Rosso International.

The folks at Cusumano say the 2019 Cusumano Etna Bianco Alta Mora uses the best Carricante grapes grown in the districts of Pietramarina and Verzella, in Castiglione di Sicilia and in Arrigo in Linguaglossa.  The volcanic terroir makes the wine what it is - a complex, character-driven wine.  Alcohol checks in at 12% abv and the wine generally sells for about $53.

This wine is tinted lightly yellow and carries a hefty bit of salinity on the nose.  There is also the scent of lemons, almonds and a wet sidewalk.  The palate shows terrific minerality, a nutty backbeat and a citrus finish that lingers.  I would like a little more acidity, but this is fresh enough.

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