6 wine resorts to try to discover Etna and its wine
6 wine resorts to try to discover Etna and its wine
To discover the Etna area and its wines, nothing better than the wine resort experience: we recommend our favorites, even in winter.
For Forbes, Sicily is in second place in the ranking of the best destinations to visit in 2020 (list drawn up by the Ovation Travel Group’s agency ). There would be to attract travelersthe wine resort is a hospitality system that revolves around wine” Some of the most notable tourist sites in the world ” and ” the mysterious landscape of Etna, the largest volcano in Europe and one of the most active volcanoes in the world” . And it is precisely on the slopes of Etna that a virtuous system of hospitality has developed that revolves around the world of wine . In fact, in recent years elegant wine resorts have been created, made from ancient millstones , the places that in ancient times were used for the pressing of grapes and the fermentation of musts. What makes this area unique is the presence of the volcano ( A Muntagnaas the locals call it) which generates a mountain climate at Mediterranean latitudes. And then the lava soils that at the end of the nineteenth century prevented the phylloxera from taking root and destroying the vineyards as in the rest of Europe, so much so that today the majestic centenary trees (vigne prefillossera) are still present.
” Etna is a natural monument – says Antonio Benanti , president of the Consorzio di Tutela Vini Etna Doc – to be visited all year round: the wine tourism season is not limited only to the summer months and travelers, both foreigners and Italians, particularly appreciate the ‘intimate and welcoming hospitality of our structures that shun the logic of mass tourism to marry instead a philosophy more on a human scale ”.there are many activities to be carried out even in winterThere are many activities that can be practiced in the winter period: there are guided tours in the cellar with tasting of Carricante and Nerello Mascalese , the two main varieties of the Volcano; the restaurants offering typical recipes of the Etnean tradition based on mountain cuisine; for sports and nature lovers, on the other hand, excursions on foot, on horseback, by bike, by jeep through the woods and paths of the Etna Park, up to the summit craters at over 3000 meters. Among the most original and fun experiences is that of exploring the area aboard the ancient littorina of the Circumetnea Railway (info and reservations on the Etna Wine Route website ). Hereinafter i best Etna wine resorts where to stay.
- Monks of the Black Lands – Zafferana Etnea. The founder and owner Guido Coffa spent 5 years in the recovery of this seventeenth-century noble residence located on the slopes of Mount Etna and founded by the monks of the order of Sant’Anna. Made with the characteristics of a singular country boutique hotel, Monaci delle Terre Nere combines the most authentic Sicilian tradition with design elements. The rooms are located between the main villa and the widespread suites, surrounded by the 24 hectares of the estate where most of the products used in the kitchen of the Locanda Nerello restaurant are grown organically.and the vineyards from which Monaci’s wine is obtained. From this year the charming structure became part of the international Relais & Chateaux association and in 2020 a new restaurant, three new suites and a bakery are planned to open.
- Zash – Riposto. An ancient manor house from the early twentieth century, in a hamlet of Riposto, converted by the Maugeri family into a country boutique hotel. Zash has 17 rooms, for a stay in close contact with nature thanks to the clever play of transparency of the large windows overlooking the suggestive Sicilian countryside. New this year the 4 glass cube rooms with small private pool, for the ultimate in privacy and comfort. Zash’s strong point is the restaurant created around and inside the tank where the wine was once fermented. A unique place where the rough and authentic charm of the ancient millstone meets the elegant and refined cuisine of the chef Giuseppe Raciti , recently awarded the covetedMichelin star by the inspectors of the 2020 guide.
- Donna Carmela – Giarre. Donna Carmela is the refined resort wanted by the Faro family, a leading family in Europe in the horticultural sector. Here the charm of an ancient nineteenth-century Sicilian residence marries modern art and design. All around Mediterranean, subtropical plants and flowers of every variety to discover Sicily also through its smells and perfumes. Exciting the experience of sleeping in eco-sustainable lodges , a perfect example of sustainable bio-architecture. Among the novelties of this year the opening of the restaurant La Cucina di Donna Carmela also to external guests who do not stay overnight in the hotel. Four hands and two hearts, those of chefs Piergiorgio Alecci and Rosario Parisi, both under 30. To accompany their gastronomic proposals an extensive wine list, including the unmissable labels of the Pietradolce winery by Michele Faro.
- Estates of Fessina – Castiglione di Sicilia. Among the producers who have given new impetus to enology on Etna, Silvia Maestrelli – from a Florentine entrepreneurial family – arrives on the volcano in the wake of a love for this territory full of contrasts. The project to create a winery took shape in 2007 when the Tuscan producer bought an old Nerello Mascalese vineyard dating back to the last century. At the center of the vineyard, a real treasure chest: an eighteenth-century millstone in lava stone, with the ancient chianca – press for pressing the marc – still intact. Today one of the most important objectives for Tenuta di Fessina is to openthe young Etna area to the dissemination and hospitality of wine. Hence the decision to create six rooms furnished with Sicilian art objects and decorated lava stone.
- Baron of Villagrande – Milo. A noble country residence still inhabited by its owners. The Nicolosi Asmundo wine resort is completely immersed in the greenery and silence of the Etna woods. Only 4 rooms, for a few and lucky guests who can thus experience the authentic atmosphere of this historic residence, attend the daily work in the vineyards and in the cellar, taste the wines while listening to the stories directly from the voice of those who produce them. Among the strengths of Barone di Villagrande there is certainly the spectacular swimming pool with a panoramic view of the terraced vineyards and the restaurant with seasonal dishes prepared by the young chef Giulia using the ingredients of the estate’s organic garden.
- Shalai – Linguaglossa. Linguaglossa, a small town on the north-east side of Etna, is the ideal base for those who decide to spend a holiday on the slopes of the volcano. From here you can easily reach the areas where winter sports are practiced. In this suggestive village there is the first Etnean charming residence open to the public: Shalai (in Sicilian dialect full joy, satisfying satisfaction) is housed in a nineteenth-century stately building. The project belongs to the Pennisi family , which for years has been engaged in activities related to quality gastronomy and the promotion of typical local products. At guests’ disposal of the 13 rooms there is a wellness center and a restaurant1 Michelin star led by chef Giovanni Santoro .