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I Vigneri di Salvo Foti

i vigneri etna photo

Albarello vine as a symbol of I Vigneri

When it's on Etna a grande signore, then this is Salvo Foti. and in its interest, the wine world should clearly differentiate between Sicily as a whole and Etna. Around it, a winegrowers' association of vintners and winegrowers has formed, which have their roots in deep tradition. In 1435, in Catania, the Maestranza dei Vigneri was founded. Today's association is also based on the ancient traditions and the cultural asset wine: I Vigneri. The old vine with the lettering and the year 1435 is immortalized on the bottles today. Obligatory for this are locations at Etna or in southeastern Sicily, old vines, autochthonous grape varieties, as little manipulation as possible, and respect for the environment as well as typical regional viticultural traditions. Salvo Foti supports the members in an advisory capacity. His own wine estate is based on the same values.

More about I Vigneri di Salvo Foti

Born from lava

If you see the vineyards of I Vigneri di Salvo Foti and his partners on Etna with your own eyes, you will simply be speechless. There are many beautiful places on earth where wine grows. But it doesn't get much more whimsical, wild, pristine, and spectacular than the vineyards around Etna. The volcanic soils provide a fertile base. The biodiversity in the vineyards is an important piece of the puzzle. Some of the ancient vines are well over 100 years old. Some are much older and are certainly among the oldest vines still in production in the world. The locally common method of cultivation called Alberello makes the vines look more like small trees.

As in an intact society, the vines - young and old - stand in the same vineyard and share ground and soil. Each one has strengths and weaknesses that it brings to the community.

The vineyards are assaulted. One looks for bigger machines in vain. It is about the preservation of ancient traditions and wine styles, and you can clearly feel this willpower in him. Salvo often quotes his grandfather, who liked to say "wine is made from grapes". So natural and pure - yet in harmony with itself and its surroundings - these timeless wines come across. No modern technology, no enzymes, no pure culture yeasts or other achievements of industrialization are needed here.

In the old Palmento

One of the lived traditions is the vinification in an old palmento, which is still actively in use in today's cellar. For this purpose, different containers, which are embedded in the ground, are filled with the mash. Afterwards, the vines are crushed to traditional music. In this way, the colour and tannins are better released from the crushed vines. I Vigneri Rosso is the result. A piece of wine history, which is balanced, energetic and powerful at the same time.

Also Vinudilice is a highlight from the portfolio. A mixed set of white and red grape varieties; with 1200 meters of altitude from one of the highest vineyards ever. Depending on the vintage, this produces a rosé-coloured sparkling or still wine.

Copyright Marian Henß and Living Wines