Contrada C 2018
ABOUT THE VINTAGE
2018 was one of the rainiest and most tropical vintages we’ve seen on Etna in the last eight years, especially at the end of the summer. This year, we had to increase the number of times we passed through the vineyards to remove leaves mindfully, avoiding any burning but allowing air to pass through the canopy to mitigate the effects of this wet and humid climate. We countered effects of disease with natural products like clay and propolis as well.
With the red wines, we found ourselves with rain, humid, and sometimes fog — not ideal conditions at the end of the of growing season, but knowing how to work our vineyards, we did not let ourselves be deceived and intervened where and as needed, like a mosaic, in the various Contrade and from the vineyards from which we make our Passorosso.
The wines of this year will be varietally correct, linear, with a pronounced acidity, with the long-lived characteristics that define the finer vintage on Etna.
Kerin O’Keefe, Wine Enthusiast, 96 points: “When grown with care and precision, Nerello Mascalese, like Nebbiolo, can make extraordinary wines even in a wet, challenging vintage like 2018 as this radiant, rounded red demonstrates. Made by one of the denomination’s stellar estates, it teases with perfumes of blue flower, rose, chamomile, baking spice and Mediterranean scrub alongside eucalyptus notes. Savory and creamy, the palate doles out crushed strawberry, black cherry, sage and star anise alongside a hint of iron. Velvety tannins provide polished support. Drink through 2028.”
Walter Speller, Jancis Robinson, 17 points: “Palish ruby. Deep brooding and sweetly perfumed with hints of cracked pepper and oatmeal. With aeration, distinct stony minerally notes emerge. Really juicy and yet elegant with a layer of finely grained tannins. A pretty, elegant wine with an attractive tannic bite. Drink 2021-2026.”
Monica Larner, The Wine Advocate, 91 points: “From the Contrada Chiappemacine that is lower on the Etna elevation scale at just 550 meters above sea level, the 2018 Contrada C offers a fine and floral interpretation of Nerello Mascalese. This delicate and graceful wine has underlined aromas of wild rose and pressed violet. There are plenty of earthy and ashy aromas as well that frame a core of sour cherry and tart cassis. But like these other Franchetti wines from the challenging 2018 vintage, the mouthfeel is leaner, lighter and ultimately shorter in this edition of 3,990 bottles. Drink 2021-2028”
100% Nerello Mascalese
1,800 feet (550 meters)