Poggio Anima Asmodeus Nero d'Avola 2019
2019 marks the seventh vintage from this vineyard. The vineyard is located in central Sicily, in the province of Caltanissetta, at about 1,600 feet above sea level. The altitude, together with the distance from the sea ensures great condition for ripening the Nero d'Avola. The vines are planted south facing following the vertical trellis system on sandy and clay rich soil using guyot pruning. After the very cool 2018 vintage and fiery hot 2017 vintage, 2019 was a truly classic and ideal vintage. Balance and elegance abounded, despite some peak summer spikes.
Poggio Anima translates to "Hill of Soul." Going back to the concept of Poggio Anima we wanted to capture the ‘soul’ of each vineyard and grape. No manipulation, no water, sugar, etc. Just the pure expression of the fruit and site. One could argue that many wines have a "soul," but very few weeknight wines share this. Poggio Anima has come along to change this.
A large, geographically and climatically diverse island, just off the toe of Italy, Sicily has long been recognized for its fortified Marsala wines. But it is also a wonderful source of diverse, high quality red and white wines. Steadily increasing in popularity over the past few decades, Italy’s fourth largest wine-producing region is finally receiving the accolades it deserves and shining in today's global market.
Though most think of the climate here as simply hot and dry, variations on this sun-drenched island range from cool Mediterranean along the coastlines to more extreme in its inland zones. Of particular note are the various microclimates of Europe's largest volcano, Mount Etna, where vineyards grow on drastically steep hillsides and varying aspects to the Ionian Sea. The more noteworthy red and white Sicilian wines that come from the volcanic soils of Mount Etna include Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Cappuccio (reds) and Carricante (whites). All share a racy streak of minerality and, at their best, bear resemblance to their respective red and white Burgundies.
Nero d’Avola is the most widely planted red variety, and is great either as single varietal bottling or in blends with other indigenous varieties or even with international ones. For example, Nero d'Avola is blended with the lighter and floral, Frappato grape, to create the elegant, Cerasuolo di Vittoria, one of the more traditional and respected Sicilian wines of the island.
Grillo and Inzolia, the grapes of Marsala, are also used to produce aromatic, crisp dry Sicilian white. Pantelleria, a subtropical island belonging to the province of Sicily, specializes in Moscato di Pantelleria, made from the variety locally known as Zibibbo.
Boldly opulent and robust, Nero d’Avola is Sicily’s most widely planted red grape. Nero d’Avola performs well both as a single varietal bottling and in blends. It loves hot, arid climates and Sicily's old vines are aptly head-trained close to the ground, making them resistant to strong winds. A few pioneering producers in California as well as Australia farm Nero d’Avola in the same way. Somm Secret—Nero d’Avola's other name, Calabrese, suggests origins from the mainland region of Calabria.