Planeta Eruzione Bianco 1614
One of the most interesting things that’s happening in wine at the moment is how big producers are pursuing new areas and old grape varieties and Planeta is no exception
It now has vineyards all over Sicily including the on-trend slopes of Mount Etna.
This deliciously crisp aromatic white however is not allowed to use the E-word (as at 870m the vines are grown higher than the 700m limit permitted by the DOC) but both the name and erupting volcano on the label clearly indicate its origin. It’s made mainly from the local (to Etna) carricante though there's also a 5% dash of riesling. The ABV is 13.5%
I drank it yesterday at Wright Bros Soho with Alaskan King crab but it would be good with any kind of raw or lightly cooked shellfish or with raw vegetable dishes. (Planeta, whose food pairing recommendations are unusually inspiring, also recommends fish soup, fish cooked in salt, marinated swordfish and pasta with cuttlefish and peas.)
You can find it online for £17.14 from a rather splendid-looking site called Made in Sicily which also sells all kinds of Sicilian food products though the minimum order is six bottles. Great Western Wine of Bath has the 2013 vintage for £18.50* and Chester Beer and Wine for £19.25. Planeta puts the ageing potential at 7-10 years though I think I'd prefer to drink it young and fresh.
Oh, and if you're wondering about the 1614 date on the label, it was the beginning of the longest continuous Etna eruption which lasted 10 years. Given the amount of investment in vineyards in the area let's hope there's not a repeat ...
* Less 5% if you buy 6 bottles or 10% if you buy a case.
I lunched at Wright Bros as a guest of Planeta.
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