2019 Gurrieri Frappato
Region: Sicily < Italy
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic farming; limestone and red clay soil, fermented and aged in stainless steel tanks for 9 months; bottled unfined/unfiltered with minimal So2; 13% ABV
Winemaker: Giovanni Gurrieri
NEW VINTAGE ALERT!
CRISTIN HERE: Ok, so after Gamay, my love for Frappato knows no bounds. There’s just so much less of it – the good stuff anyway – that we don’t drink it as much as we would like. Red wine to pair with seafood? Check. Red wine for food on the grill? Check. Red wine that to bring to a party that will be fought after and finished in under 20 minutes? Check. Frappato is chillable, but also semi-serious, so we were psyched to find that this new import from the Gurrieri family checks all those boxes and more. Sweet fruit with tangy white strawberry, tangerine and floral notes meld with a smoky spice that makes it irresistible, especially as an aperitivo. Hailing from the southern tip of Siciliy, where the Gurrieri’s had been organic table grape growers for three generations until son Giovanni rallied them to winemaking back in the mid-90s. He surveyed the family’s 20 hectares of land in the Vittoria area of coastal southeastern Sicily, and picked out just 5 with the best soil, exposure and climate – meaning, cooling Mediterranean breezes and a 25 degree (Celsius!) diurnal temperature shift between day and night. They’ve been farming their land organically forever but became certified for wine production. They pick every grape and individual plot by hand, at peak ripeness, starting in the middle of the night to ensure the grapes come to the winery cold. After that, cellar work is minimal and so you’ve got nothing left to bottle but pure, Sicilian terroir!
Which here, on Sicily's southern tip, tastes like crushed, ripe strawberry and white pepper with a hint of orange zest. It's fresh and incredibly easy drinking, with lively acidity and soft tannins, finishing on an almost salty note. SERVE SLIGHTLY CHILLED.