Similar in scope to Laura Catena’s La Posta line in Argentina, Mary Taylor works with individual growers in small villages throughout Europe who produce regionally-distinctive wines beyond the great grapes of the canon, but may not have production resources or logistics to distribute globally. Today we’re taking our first look at this distribution house with a Sicilia Rosso, produced by the Sala sisters of western Sicily. This is a 100% Nero d’Avola (translation: ‘Black Grape of Avola’) and 100% organic offering, a grape native to Sicily and as close to an “official” grape of a region as possible without having some sort of formal distinction.
The wine is a lovely shade of ruby, with complementing notes of cherry, baking spice, and a faint trace of fresh topsoil on the nose after about a 30-minute decant. The palate keeps things as advertised on the nose at first, but makes room for light touches of tobacco leaf, cranberry, and anise along the way. It’s very well-structured, with decent acidity and soft tannins closing things out on a lengthy finish full of cherry preserves, licorice, and rosemary.
This could work well as a nice alternative to a Claret or Cabernet Sauvignon. It’s bold without being excessively demanding or brutish, and the balance between the fruit and spice holds the attention for a while.
A- / $17