Vino di Anna Palmentino Rosso
Anna Martens and Eric Narioo made their first wine together on Mount Etna in 2008. In 2010, the couple purchased their first vineyard of old vine Nerello Mascelese in Contrada Crasà, along with a neighbouring, derelict palmento and “deposito”. Today, the family wine estate owns 7 hectares of land spread across the northern slopes of the volcano, which they farm biodynamically. Together, they make a range of wines, expressive of their “terroir”. Vino di Anna is a small, family wine estate situated high on the northern slopes of Mt Etna, near the village of Solicchiata. The vineyards are located in different Contrade (historic lava flows) from the picturesque, red, iron-rich pumice soils of Contrada Monte Pomiciaro, near Linguaglossa to Piano Filici where lies the secluded vineyard of “Don Alfio” around and up the volcano to Contrada Rampante, onto Contrada Pirao, which touches the National Park at an altitude of 1000 metres, ending on the north-western side of the volcano with vineyards in Contrade Nave and Tartaraci.
The Vino di Anna wines are made on their small property without much intervention, using native yeasts and no additives, save for a little SO2 in some lots (normally nothing is added at all). A variety of vessels are used for fermentation, including Palmento, old barrels and a Georgian qvevri. The Palmento is interesting. It is a traditional, multi-level winery, and the most traditional of these are carved into the rocks. The top level contains vats in which the grapes are foottrodden. The free run juice then flows into another vat on the next level where it ferments. The skins and pips remaining on the top level are pressed under a wicker mat (a ‘donkey’) and the extracted juice joins the free-run in the lower vat where fermentation takes place over a few days. Then the wine goes down another level into barrels.
The Palmentino Rosso is blend of cuvees of Nerello Mascalese grapes from old bush vines which are co-planted with small quantities of Nerello Cappuccio, Grenache and white varieties; Grecanico, Catarratto and Minella Bianca. 50% of the blend is wine made in a Palmento. 30% is wine made in a Georgian qvevri, with a one month skin maceration. The remaining 20% of the blend is a wine fermented and aged in a used, oak botte.