I was fortunate enough to be invited to a former colleague’s wedding in July. Claire Griffiths, in her flowing, svelte, lacy dress, joyfully wed William Scott-Gall in a picturesque Welsh church in the small village of Miskin.
Almost as exciting as the nuptials were the wines they served. Though I did not initially choose them, I could technically take credit for their presence as role of oenological consultant in the big affair.
All the wines were of course delicious, but the stand out was the 2006 “˜A Rina, a Burgundian styled red from the eastern side of Sicily from vineyards that are tucked under the smouldering Mount Etna. The 2006 is the first vintage that we imported (and the first commercial release) from the quiet and thoughtful Giuseppe Russo, a former concert pianist turned winemaker. Nicknamed the “˜Burgundy of the Mediterranean’, Etna Rosso embodies all the elegance of Pinot Noir but with more fruit and definitely more tannin occasionally akin Nebbiolo.
Now two years on, it is drinking beautifully – notes with sweet raspberry and aromatic spice gently unfolding from the glass. Even self-professed “˜only white wine’ drinkers were delving in. Though we no longer have the 2006 in stock, we still have some of the 2008 which we feel is the best “˜A Rina yet. So, congrats to Claire and Will and a big “˜Grazie’ for cellaring a bit of the good stuff to share with thirsty friends (and all those die-hard Chardonnay fans).