Nerello Mascalese | Grape variety
Nerello Mascalese refers to a red wine variety that is extremely popular in Sicily. It is surpassed in popularity on the island only by the classic Nero d'Avola. Good, single-varietal table wines can be obtained from Nerello Mascalese. Especially in the DOC region around Etna, very high quality red wines are also made from the variety. The grape variety reveals a lot about its growing conditions in terms of taste, and stands for a fruity flavor that has notes of various herbs as well as nuances of earth and minerals.
Nerello Mascalese is grown mainly on the fertile slopes of Mount Etna and at altitudes of up to 1000 meters, in wine-growing areas that are among the highest in Europe. The altitude of cultivation also means that wines made from Nerello Mascalese acquire a certain lightness that contrasts with the typical heaviness of Sicilian red wines.
Especially in recent years, Nerello Mascalese enjoys growing popularity. Often the wines are distantly reminiscent of the noble varieties from Burgundy or Barolo. Moreover, it has recently been proven that Nerello Mascalese is descended from the famous Italian grape variety Sangiovese. From a culinary point of view, a wine made from Nerello Mascalese is recommended, for example, with fillets of pigeon, wild mushrooms or mussels. - Gerardo