(2022) A lightly-oaked Nero d'Avola from the Italian island of Sicily that spent a few months in oak barrels. Deep in colour, the nose has a fragrant black cherry lift to the aroma, quite pretty and touching on floral, before a very juicy palate, the ripe blackberry fruit set against a little toast and earthiness, the tannins supple and the acidity giving a fine, dry, plum-skin finish to the wine.
(2021) Relatively pale ruby to chestnut in colour, there's a gentle earthiness, creaminess and soft autumnal quality to this, with spiced berry fruit. In the mouth it is dry and has a sappy, spicy quality, just hinting at sweet berry fruit again, even a hint of mocha, but the freshness of the acidity and some bitter cherry and endive strictness keep it quite pert and zippy to the finish. Watch the video for more information and food-matching suggestions.
(2021) Made from 100% Nero dâ€™Avola, aged 10 months in French oak barriques, this has a crowd-pleasing 7.8g/l of residual sugar, which is apparent in the sweet and soft fruity finish. Very dark in colour, it opens with cherry and violet, a hint of chocolate, and pulpy black berry fruit. In the mouth round and caressing because of that sweetness, substantial and fleshy, a little mocha from the oak and enough acidity to counteract the sweetness and modesty of the tannins. If you are not too snobbish about your wines, you'd have to like this charmer.
(2018) The indigenous Nero d'Avola is one of Sicily's most important red wine varieties, here made in the appasimento style. That means a proportion of the grapes were dried before fermentation, and that has resulted in a rich, dark wine with just a trace of sweetness. Bold with a cherry fruited acidity to brighten, its extremely quaffable and the soft finish makes it very crowd-friendly. Watch the video for more information on the wine and the appasimento technique, and for food-matching ideas. The price falls to Â£8.99 if bought as part of a mixed six from Majestic.
(2017) This organic Nero d'Avola from Sicily is immediately striking because it comes in a tall 'flute' bottle more commonly seen on aromatic white wines. It is dark and powerful stuff, almost syrupy and balsamic in its aromas, but a welter-weight of spicy berry and plum fruit too. The palate is bold and ripe, with plenty of tannin and textural fat in the mouth, a wine with a bit of real heft despite that sweet opulence of the fruit. Good value, especially for Daily Drinker members at Â£8.10.
(2017) A very handsomely packaged wine, there's a dramatic liquorice and graphite darkness to the aromas, a delightfully juicy palate, sparked by some herb and spice notes, but really it is all about savoury and lightly gamy black fruit into a long, energetic finish with excellent acidity and taut tannins.Fine quality at the price for this wine made from the native Sicilian Nerello Mascalese.
(2016) Sicily's Frappato usually delights and so it is with this light, fresh and buoyant red, a touch of ink and earth adding some seriousness, but it's about the wild strawberry lift and freshness. Dry on the palate, there is some intensity here, the finish showing a little more tannin and seriousness than some, but it remains joyous, buoyant and fruit-filled - just as it should be.
(2015) If you haven't yet discovered the bountiful joys of Frappato, this example from Sicily is an excllent introduction to its cherry-fresh style. There's lipstick and a floral lift on the nose, loads of that cherry-cola fruitiness and then so much super ripe and juicy fruit on the palate. Not serious, but a little star, with bucket and a half of pleasure in every glass.
(2011) 13%. An interesting little wine from Sicily blending Nero d'Avola with the seldom-seen Frapatto, a Sicilian native. Juicy is the word for the nose, with keen, fresh black berries and ripe black cherries flooding out, a little hint of charcoally definition too. On the palate this has a lightness about it, despite having a seem of concentrated, plum-skin and liquorice bittersweet fruit, but there's an edge and a hint of florality that gives this lift and zing. Yummy stuff for pizza.