Tenuta delle Terre Nere Etna Rosso Calderara Sottana Grand Cru 2020
The soils of Calderara Sottana are easily recognized, even at a glance. Of all the AOC Etna crus, they are definitely the stoniest. So much so that in the exemplary areas you can’t see the ground from the boulders that are there. Big as a fist, light, a mixture of black pumice and basalt.
The word itself, Calderara, is reminiscent of warmth, probably born of the warmth that black stones retain and transmit back to the earth on cold nights.
The terroir of Contrada Calderara originated from lava flows and volcano-clastic deposits related to the effusive and explosive activity of the Ellittico eruptive center , approximately between 60,000 and 15,000 years ago. Although very young in geological terms, the soil of the Elliptic is the oldest surface layer where planting is possible. The reason is simple: millennia of lava flows have buried The oldest soils, leaving, in fact, only small and rare portions of the Ellithic soil. On the northern slope of Etna there are five or six Contrade that have “elliptical terroir.” Three soils, however, are spurious in that the igneous nature of the Ellittico was mixed with alluvial soils of sedimentary nature due to the overflow of the Alcantara River. On the northern slope of Etna only three Contrade out of hundreds and hundreds are “pure” Elliptic terroir: Bocca d’Orzo, Calderara and San Lorenzo.
The altitude varies from 600 to 700 meters. Harvesting takes place in the second decade of October. Locally Calderara and its wines enjoy an extraordinary reputation. Calderara Sottana comes from very old vineyards, 50 to 100 years old. Of all the crus it is perhaps the most comprehensive: just as a wide-angle lens encompasses the widest panorama, so Calderara seems to contain and exhibit the widest spectrum of flavors, aromas, nuances. Distinctly autumnal, spicy, it is aromatic and austere at the same time. It gives a wonderful feeling of fullness on the palate, yet ineffably mild.
Don Peppino, whose devotion to Calderara led him to cultivate its vineyards for 70 years, well described Calderara’s wines: “creamy,” he called them. And he was right. Noble poultry, white meat ragout, arista, suckling pig, rabbit in white wine, roast lamb.
Denomination: Etna Rosso D.O.C.
First vintage produced: 2003
Production area: contrada Calderara, municipality of Randazzo (Catania)
Grape varieties: 98% Nerello mascalese, 2% Nerello cappuccio
Vineyard area: 15 ha
Yield per hectare: 5 tons/ha
Soil characteristics: volcanic, extremely stony, shallow, very rich in skeleton
Exposure: north slope of Etna at 600-650 meters above sea level.
Average age of vines: 50 to 100 years old
Breeding: traditional Etnean sapling converted to espalier
Harvest period: first decade of October
Vinification: temperature-controlled alcoholic fermentation (28-30°C)
Aging: spontaneous malolactic fermentation and maturation in barriques, tonneaux and large barrels (10-30 hl) of French oak (20% new wood).
Bottling after 16-18 months of aging in wood and 1 month of aging steel
Appearance: faint ruby with mahogany highlights
Nose: intense, with hints of ripe fruit and spicesFlavor: structured and full, with tannins present but softBenchings: meats, aged cheeses
Recommended serving temperature: 18-20° C
Alcohol content: 14.5 percent
Annual production: 11,000 bottles (0.75 l)