Azienda Agricola Cortese
Cortese is a long-running organic wine growing estate in Sicily’s southern Vittoria region that has been given a new lease of life under the fresh ownership of Stefano Girelli since 2016, who also runs nearby organic winery Santa Tresa. Girelli is a big believer in organics, and that ‘Sicily is the perfect place to grow organic wines at a high quality level' At Cortese they produce wine in the most traditional and natural way to reflect the true character of the estate’s terroir and its grape varieties.
Taking tradition as their inspiration, they started to employ ancient wine-making techniques such as fermentation in terracotta. The resulting wines reflect the combination of modern technology and traditional techniques, with every nuance of the terroir showing through.
The wine is ruby red, with flecks of garnet. The bouquet is fruit-driven, with aromas of cherries, pomegranate and fruits of the forest, plus cocoa, leather and caramel. The palate is elegant and complex. Hugely concentrated, the tannins are at the same time firm and persistent.
Enjoy with a mushroom risotto.
The two grape varieties are vinified separately, in different ways: the Nero d’Avola is fermented in open top barriques, enabling them to follow a really scrupulous process. They carry out “follatura” (immersion of the skins) by hand and extremely delicately. The Frappato, on the other hand, is fermented in 7hl terracotta amphorae. The natural porosity of terracotta allows the ideal oxygen exchange during the fermentation process. At the same time it also allows the wine to remain in contact with the skins for an extended period of up to 12 months. The wines are blended together and are aged for six months in barriques and botti of various sizes. The wine remains in bottle for at least 3 months before being introduced to the market.