Sicily, mother of all wine

Sicily is the mother of all wine. It was from this devastatingly beautiful island that wine cultivation was brought to the rest of Europe. With her 135.000 hectares of vineyard, and an annual wine production of over 800 million litres, Sicily produces more wine than anywhere else in Italy. For centuries it was the Sicilian wine that was prostituted as a seasoning to boost the taste of more expensive North Italian wines.   In the last few decades Sicilian wines have managed to break free from the claws of Northern mass producers and these days there are many successful local wines being produced that are of a very high standard. One grape that is often found in these wines is the Nero d'Avola, but Cabernet, Syrah and Merlot fare very well here too. High up on the slopes of the Etna you'll find the Nerello Mascalese. A grape that in taste, complexity and elegance resembles the Pinot noir. When it comes to white wine the Carricante comes recommended. Other good white wine grapes are Grillo, Insolia and Catarratto.

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