July: Pietradolce Etna Bianco

This heat wave is killing me!! Seriously, I am not made for this. Luckily I know some wines that are.

You know I'm all about summer reds but when the Earth feels like it's on fire, it's a job for white wine. Sorry red wine fans, you're going to need to find one you like. It's time to crank the air conditioning, lick a dripping ice cream cone, and sip white wine from an island that knows how to deal with scorching hot weather. This month, we're talking Sicily. Capisce?

Pietradolce Etna Bianco 2016

What's hotter than this weather? A volcano. And that's about it. (I promise I'm done complaining... almost.) While these temperatures will quickly fade into pleasant weather at the end of the week, a volcano's lava flow takes a bit longer to settle down. When it eventually does turn into volcanic soil, it can be some of the best for growing grapes thanks to its dense nutrients. Some of the most interesting wines in the world come from volcanic slopes just like Mount Etna's.

Grapes like the Carricante found in Pietradolce's Etna Bianco benefit both from the volcanic soil and the dramatic day to night temperature shifts on Mount Etna. Pietradolce chooses to plant native grapes here, specifically on the north east slopes, to leverage the volcano's special terroir. It is known to produce a minerality that is rarely matched.
Carricante is a new grape to add to my list!

Salty Lemons on the Beach

Pietradolce's Etna Bianco is 100% Carricante grown on young 8-year-old vines, hand harvested, and aged in stainless steel. The Etna DOC also allows Catarratto, Minella, Grecanico, and Insolia, but Pietradolce prefers the superior Carricante for its savory minerality, which shines through this wine.

It is like sucking on a salted lemon peel on a hot beach. The flavors are full, pronounced, and warm, yet fresh and crisp. This wine reminds me of green herbs and flowers just picked from the garden. New and light but amplified by the warm sunlight. It's a citrus bouquet with green and floral notes, and a little residual sand still stuck to your warm skin.

My Notes
Appearance: Clear, medium- intensity, lemon color
Nose: Clean, medium+ intensity, salted lemon peel, lime peel, orange pith, fresh parsley, white roses, sand, white stone
Palate: Dry, high acid, warm salted lemons, lime juice, lime peel, orange pith, sand, sea spray, parsley, white roses, jasmine
Finish: Medium
Quality: Very good. Bright, flavorful, multi-dimensional.
Price: $23.99

Love red wine? Pietradolce's Etna Rosso is worth a try, too!