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2013 Moscato di Noto “Mizzica”


2013 Moscato di Noto “Mizzica” Riofavara - Kermit Lynch Wine Merchant
I just tasted a sample of this wine with our national sales team earlier this week, and it elicited a lot of oohs and aahs. It is certainly a unique creation, and perhaps a first in the wine world. Massimo Padova of Riofavara took his indigenous Moscato grapes from the Val di Noto in southeastern Sicily and used them to craft a bonedry white. (The area is known for its sweet wines.) Noto’s terroir consists of an arid plateau of white limestone, so imagine what dry Muscat grown in these conditions tastes like: an herbal infusion with exotic fruit and a dry, chalky finish.

Dixon Brooke

Vintage: 2013
Bottle Size: 750mL
Blend: Moscato di Noto
Appellation: Moscato di Noto
Country: Italy
Region: Sicily
Producer: Riofavara
Winemaker: Massimo Padova
Vineyard: Planted in 2004, 1.8 ha
Soil: Chalk, Limestone
Aging: Wine is aged in stainless steel for 6 months and then in bottle for 3 months
Farming: Organic (certified)
Alcohol: 11%

More from this Producer or Region

About Sicily

Italy’s southernmost region and the largest island in the Mediterranean, Sicily has no shortage of sunshine to grow high-quality grapes on a yearly basis. It also does not lack a history of winemaking: since the Greeks settled here almost three millennia ago, the vine has played a major role in the island’s agricultural makeup. Production of cheap bulk wine for blending dominated much of its recent history until now, as we are witnessing a quality revolution that puts forth its great diversity and quality of terroirs, indigenous grape varieties, and local production methods.

While Sicily’s historical reputation is for sweet wines—Marsala and the Muscats of Pantelleria stand out—a number of dry whites and reds are enjoying the spotlight today. The cooler, high-altitude slopes of Etna, with its ashy volcanic soils, have seen an explosion of activity from producers both local and foreign; both whites (primarily from Carricante) and reds (Nerello Mascalese) here are capable of uncommon freshness and finesse. Other noteworthy wine regions are Eloro, where Nero d’Avola gives its best; Noto, an oasis of dry and sweet Moscatos; Vittoria, with its supple, perfumed Frappatos; and Salina, where Malvasia makes thirst-quenching dry whites and deliciously succulent passiti.

Countless foreign invasions over the centuries have given Sicilian architecture and cuisine a unique exotic twist, making it a fascinating destination for gourmands as well as wine importers. With a wealth of dedicated artisans proud to show off the riches of their land, you can bet there are many exciting things still to come from this incredible island.

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Great winemakers, great terroirs, there is never any hurry. And I no longer buy into this idea of “peak” maturity. Great winemakers, great terroirs, their wines offer different pleasures at different ages.

Inspiring Thirst, page 312


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