Sicilian wine adventures – Part 11; Cerasuolo di Vittoria


Finding and telling about a, for many, unknown producer making outstanding wines is a joy. However, many of these are small in their production scale and sometimes difficult to find. Therefore, writing about a great wine most should be able to find quite easily is just as fun!

It’s easy to get the idea wine bloggers neglect the larger-scaled producers and focus on more rare or not as heard of-wines. The sad part in this is that many readers won’t even try to track down a wine because it’s too much effort involved.

Well, remember this one! It’s fairly easy to find, it’s offered at a bargain price considering what’s in the bottle and it’s made on indigenous Sicilian grapes. Most of you have probably heard of – and tasted as well – the wines of Planeta. Modernly styled wines but never loosing contact with their origin. My favorite from Planeta is the blend of Nero d’Avola and the aromatic Frappato – the Cerasuolo di Vittoria. Even if I normally doesn’t care about legislation it is interesting to know this is the first DOCG of Sicily (awarded in 2005).

In the southern parts of Sicily, around Ragusa, you will find the DOCG. The blending proportions of the grapes vary depending on producer, but normally it’s slightly more Nero d’Avola. If you like Grenache based Cotes du Rhone-wines and Cru Beaujolais, you will love the Cerasuolo di Vittoria from Planeta. The aromas from the Frappato grape are indicating this is a wine that is at its best when drunk young, but Nero d’Avola will allow it to cellar for a few years.

The 2009 however, isn’t a keeper at my home. Can’t see the point in it when the wine’s just pure drinking joy already. The name Cerasuolo derives from the Sicilian word for cherry – cerasa. And yes, you will find plenty of red cherry aromas in the wine.

2009 Cerasuolo di Vittoria, Planeta, Sicily, 89-90 p

Burgundy glass. Pop’n pour. Slightly chilled.

Starts delivering right away. Ruby color. Youthful aromas of cherries, strawberries, fudge, warm earth, flowers, lead pencil and sweet licorice. Seductive in the sense that you long for a solid and instant mouthful.

Like a really good Beaujolais on the palate. Just add the warmer climate. Lead pencil, cherries, fine mouth-watering acidity, silky tannins, warm earth, vanilla fudge and roses. Pure fruit feel, warming feeling and nice length. Great with food, just as delicious without. the 2009 Cerasuolo di Vittoria from Planeta is a great wine for the summer!

I said bargain in the beginning. Buy one and see if you agree. Europeans can find it here at EUR 10,90. Or, do a wine-search here.

PS. Wonderful with a Bolognese.

PS.2. Please help me!  I bought a Grappa in Modica a few years ago. It was a clear Cerasuolo from the province of Ragusa and one of the best Grappa’s I’ve ever had. It came in 50 cl bottles. I managed to get rid of the empty bottle before writing down the name, so if you know of any small-scaled high quality Grappa producers in the area please tell me!