Selecting a wine for the celebratory Easter meal comes with its own set of challenges.  Much like Christmas and Thanksgiving, there are so many robust flavors competing for your attention, it’s not easy to focus down on a wine that will work well with everything.

Thank goodness for Savino’s “Nero Sichilli”  Nero d’Avola.

Vittorio Savino’s estate lies within the Nature Reserve of Vendicari between Noto and Pachino in South-eastern Sicily.  Aside from being part of a classic Nero d’Avola production zone, this is also one of the most important protected areas for migratory birds on their routes between Europe and Africa, especially for flamingos!

This is why Vittorio Savino has chosen the flamingo as a symbol of the winery. After meeting with famous Sicilian enologist Salvo Foti, Vittorio was inspired and began to restore the ancient vineyards of Nero d’Avola he had found abandoned on his property, without using synthetic products or fertilizers other than sheep manure.  The vineyard is worked manually and with the help of Gino the Mule, who first learned to till the soil on the narrow terraces of Mt. Etna.

The Nero Sichilli is 100% Nero d’Avola, and it is full of the bright red cherry fruit you’d expect.  What I wasn’t expecting was the acidity and minerality that coursed through the wine from start to finish.  This is a robust and hearty red, but with an elegant twist- the lean acids and bright fruit keep it from becoming ponderous and weighed-down.  This acidity and perky fruitiness also made it the perfect pairing for our special Easter dinner.

As my mom said when she tasted the wine, “It tastes like Sicilian Sunshine!”

I couldn’t have said it better myself, mom.

About The Author

I love all things Italian: the beautiful country of Italia, the Italians themselves, the language, the food… and above all, I love Italian wine. The people I meet in my charmed life are fascinating, the wines are extraordinary. I needed a special place like this to write about them, and to remember them.

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