The Giacomettis farm a rugged patch of granite in northwest Corsica known as the Désert des Agriates, which falls under the Patrimonio appellation in spite of being geographically and geologically removed. While red Patrimonio, made from the Niellucciu grape, is a dark, profound, brooding wine—an unapologetic dose of Corsican oomph—this bottling is 100% Sciaccarellu, so it cannot call itself a Patrimonio. Exuberantly juicy and flamboyantly scented of smashed raspberries, pepper, and herbs, Sempre Cuntentu epitomizes that island joie de vivre.
To accompany simply prepared Mediterranean cuisine, you’ll have trouble finding better than this Sicilian charmer. Try this: cut some zucchini lengthwise into thin slices, then fry them in olive oil. Season with oregano and thyme. Layer the browned pieces in a dish; spoon tomato sauce over the top. Cover the whole with gobs of fresh mozzarella, and place your creation in the oven until the cheese is bubbling assertively. Pour a glass of this blend of Calabrese (aka Nero d’Avola) and Frappato. Its flavors perfectly echo those in the dish, while the wine’s medium weight and cleansing acid invite repeated gulping, without ever going to your head.
Cagnulari is a variety cultivated almost exclusively in northwest Sardinia, around the old Catalan bastion of Alghero. Have a whiff: redolent of wild black fruits, graphite, plus an herbaceous element recalling tobacco and eucalyptus, this is not an aroma you’ll encounter anywhere else in the world of wine. An inky-black tooth-stainer, this meaty red has dense, grippy tannins that coat the palate like blackberry pulp.