2016 Gulfi, Rossojbleo, Terre Siciliane IGT, Sicily, Italy.
The all organic Gulfi Rossojbleo is a solid effort and great introduction to Gulfi’s Nero d’Avola wines, it’s a lighter and fresher expression of terroir and grape, showing vibrant acidity from limestone-rich soils of the south eastern side of Sicily removed from the volcanic influences. Gulfi has many vine parcels, both near Vittoria as well as on Mount Etna as well all of which are Biodynamic and vinified with minimal intervention to highlight purity and a sense of place, with this basic 100% Nero d’Avola cuvee that is all stainless steel fermentation and aging from non-irrigated southwest facing vineyard located 450 metres above sea level. This Rossojbleo Nero d’Avola comes a cru is grown at close to 450 meters up in the Hyblaean mountains in southeast Sicily. The nearby forests help to maintain a cooler climate and prolong the maturation period. The vineyard produces tiny yields, according to the winery, it’s less than 1kg (about 2 pounds) of fruit per vine with a planting density of 8,900 vines per hectare. The soil is rich in clay with limestone sediments, perfect for making fruit forward and elegant wines, and this Gulfi Rossojbleo is just that with a silky texture, medium body and layers of cherry rich retails with light spices, mineral tones and hints of dried herbs it flows smoothly across the generous palate with a sense of place and restraint. Sicily is one of the world’s most exciting places and while Etna, where Gulfi has some great stuff as well, gets the headlines, everywhere it seems on the island is making thrilling and unique wines, without question it is the golden age of wine from Sicily. This Nero d’Avola is a killer value and easy to love with it’s pretty delicate floral notes, earthy charm and it’s unfolding red fruits, including wild raspberry, strawberry, plum and the mentioned core of cherry make it a great budget choice for something interesting and entertaining, especially with simple and rustic cuisine. Look for Gulfi, they have a great variety to choice from, with a range that has an array of local grapes from Frappato to Nerello Mascalese.
($16 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive

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