I love love love wine labels. Mostly because I had to sell/see so many bottles with crap ones. There is a winery in Sicily that always impresses me with what’s inside and outside the bottle. The Donnafugata Floramundi carries on that tradition.
Perhaps you may remember Donnafugata from such bottles with great labels as Anthìlia, a white wine made from the indigenous Catarratto grape. (Went a little Troy McClure there.) I was sent an sample of the winery’s new red wine from the Cerasuolo di Vittoria region. Where is it, you might ask? Here’s a charming map from the winery:
There’s Vittoria in the lower righthand corner of Sicily. One of my favorite red wines from Sicily (and the world) comes from this neck of the woods, made from the Frappato grape. (I can never remember if it’s got a double “p” or “t” and I guessed wrong again. Going to have to come up with a pneumonic device for my brain.) It’s one of my favorite dinner wines. Frappato also plays a role in this wine, so let’s get to it.
Donnafugata Floramundi 2016 Cerasuolo di Vittoria
What makes Cerasuolo di Vittoria unique is it’s a blend of two indigenous grapes, said Frappato and Nero d’Avola. In the case of the Floramundi, it’s 30% Frappato and 70% Nero d’Avola. The Frappato is the lighter grape while Nero adds some brooding depth. Combine the two and you have a really compelling wine.
Drinking this wine, I get a fresh pop of Frappato (Fra-pop-oh!) followed by some deep darkness from the Nero d’Avola. It finishes with a peppery, sage-y kick. Reminds me of a great stew, like drinking a melange of many seasonings and flavors coming together harmoniously after hanging out in a confined space (in a friendly manner) for quite some time.
As rich as this wine is, I was surprised that it sees no oak. That’s the (literal) power of Nero d’Avola. The ABV is 13.3%, which is cool by me. Price is 30 bucks.
Let’s learn a bit about the label, shall we? Here’s what the winery has to say:
Floramundi is a fantastic figure of a woman who is giving the gift of wonderful interlacements of flowers and fruits with velvety tones. It is a dialogue between two souls, the elegant and sophisticated one of Floral Liberty, of which Vittoria is rich in testimonies, and the fascinating and suggestive one of the tradition of the Pupi Siciliani (Sicilian Puppets). A dialogue between Nero d’Avola and Frappato to listen to with pleasure.
I like the idea of the Donnafugata Floramundi as a dialog between the two grapes and it’s certainly a pleasure to listen to the two grapes “speak.”