Frank Cornelissen Susucaru Rosso 2019
Predominantly Nerello Mascalese, this is made into a supple, fragrant light red. It’s inherently balanced and generously textured. After destemming, light crushing it has about 60 days on skins before settling and bottling.
Frank Cornelissen is a formative, revered figure in the modern Sicilian wine scene, with a cult following globally. Having worked in the wine trade in Belgium, he quickly recognised the potential for wine growing in the northern valleys on the island’s active volcano Mount Etna. He has an unrelenting commitment to being hands off, even avoiding organic, biodynamic and homeopathic intervention. From Alberello trained bush vines, fruit is harvested at extremely low crop levels, with the trimming of individual bunches a common practice to aid ripening. Fermentation and aging are done in epoxy lined vessels so that there’s no absorption of external flavours like oak. Purity by a purist.
Wines grown on the slopes of the active Sicilian volcano Mount Etna have quickly gained a place in the hearts of the wine lovers the world over. The main grape variety Nerello Mascalese has been compared to Pinot grown in Burgundy or Nebbiolo from Piedmont, based on being ethereal and delicate, but at the same time structured and grounded. Like Pinot and Nebbiolo, there is a transparent expression of place in the wines, with altitude and volcanic soils making a characterful impact here.