Girolamo Russo 'a Rina 2020
Grapes: Nerello Mascarello, Nerello Cappuccio
Region: Sicily, Italy
Giuseppe Russo took over the estate in 2004, inheriting his father Girolamo’s 12 hectares on the north face of Etna near Passopisciaro right when the Etna renaissance was blossoming. At 32 years of age, Giuseppe was studied in music and had a phD in literature and knew nothing of wine except what he had absorbed from his childhood growing up in the shadows of this mighty mountain. “Intimate and profound” is how Giuseppe Russo describes the act of making wine on the slopes of Mount Etna. Here, in a place of untamable energy, Giuseppe seeks to express and respect the place of his birth, Passopisciaro, through his wines. Ancient vineyards at exceptional altitudes, organic farming and traditional methods combine to allow for nature’s maximum expression to shine on the northern side of this mighty Sicilian mountain.“A ‘Rina” means sand in local dialect, a nod to the sandy volcanic soils from which this wine is made. It is a multi-contrada wine that Beppe is quick to point out is not “entry level” but rather a symphony or melody of of the three different contradas from his estate that showcase their harmony with one another. 94% Nerello Mascalese with 6% Nerello Cappuccio to add color and amplify the fruit, the wine spends 12 months in Slavonian oak.