I Custodi Etna Rosso, Aetneus | 2016
You can’t talk about the wines of Mount Etna without mentioning Salvo Foti. Born in Catania in 1962, his life entails a long pursuit of honest winemaking, gritty farming, teaching, and writing. He is largely responsible for putting Etna wines on the map and making the region that was once a “cool kid” to, now, a forever classic. Founded in 2007, I Custodi is a special project that represents the soul of Mount Etna wines: old vines, north to southeast facing slopes, black lava terraces, crumbled fields of pumice, and extended élevage in the cellar. The Aetneus Rosso cuvée is the flagship red, which boasts seriously old vines (some up to 150 years old!) A blend of Nerello Mascalese, Nerello Cappuccio, and Alicante, it’s brisk, lush and velvety with the darkest of red fruits, exotic purple spices, and sweet black earth. With less than 5,000 bottles produced, I’d grab a few extra, and cheers to the life of a legend. ~AA
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