This winter did make us fear for the summer reserves of water, but then in spring an unusually plentiful rainfall covered the whole of our region until the beginning of May. This is why in Sicily we had no expectations of an early vintage but, until mid-July, we were thinking rather of a late vintage. From July onwards, the most important time for deciding quality, the weather was particularly propitious. After two short but intense heatwaves, typical for the period from 20th July to 15th August, it stayed fine, temperatures stabilized, and persistent high pressure presented us with a vintage with no rainfall the first slight shower arrived on 25th September! and with amazing maturation. For those who enjoy comparisons, in our reckoning the recent years most similar to 2007, in Sicily, are 1997 and 2001.
The result was a superb vintage, the indigenous varieties are absolutely excellent. A dry and luminous vintage provided us with a superior quality. The other French varieties are intense and varietal; the Nero d'Avola, the part of La Segreta Rosso blend, is at its top. Syrah is just perfect
The harvest began with a delay of about 10-14 days (August 17). Temperatures have increased markedly since August 20, while maintaining the proper level of humidity and avoiding dehydration and concentration of the fruit. Harvesting grecanico ended the last days of September.
Might 2010 be one of the best vintages out of the previous ten? It is early to say but it is certainly a super vintage.
The temperatures stayed in the average range and, more importantly, showed no heat spikes. Both September and October were mild, and sporadic rainfalls at the end of the season accomplished the vintage. Menfi and Sambuca: Thanks to the diminished yield the red French grapes, most of all Syrah and Cabernet Franc, were even better. This means great colour and great structure.
The harvest was completed with the harvest of Grecanico, a variety that prefers drier weather. For this reason, the grapes are fully intact thanks to a climate free of moisture.
Beautiful white wines, produced by a cool and bright July and August. A richer Chardonnay without more alcohol. A super-aromatic Fiano and average Grecanico. The reds, Merlot and Cabernet, benefitted from a cooler harvest with a thick dense tannin structure, thanks to extended ripening. Syrah prefers a dry September and is rather less than excellent. Nero d’Avola is fresh and fruity as rarely before.
A great vintage for two perfectly combined reasons: a rainier spring than the average for the past ten years, especially in June, and therefore vines that face the summer stress-free, and a rain-free period of ripening of the grapes with July, August and September completely dry. To say the least, these are the ideal temperatures and quantity of light, with July cooler since 2004; on the contrary, the brightest September (since 2007) and, to best complete the ripening of the reds, the absolute hottest of the series analyzed. The perfect vintage!
A year which enhanced the indigenous varieties, particularly Grecanico, very aromatic, and a glorious Nero d’Avola with fruit, density and compact tannins as never before. Fiano is good, Chardonnay more consistent. Merlot and Syrah at their peak, thanks to the weather. The Cabernet is perhaps slightly rigid.
At Menfi in the south-west had little rainfall and temperatures slightly colder than 2015, followed by a beautiful spring with rain in March and showers generally, which prepared the vines well. The cooler summer with average temperatures between June and September being well below those of 2015 contributed to a fine harvest. The result has been aromatic and balanced white wines with Chardonnay, Grecanico and Grillo peaking in quality, and the big French reds with particularly dense and ample tannins thanks to long slow ripening. Nero d’Avola in particular, thanks also to the lower production, is very aromatic and colourful.
The harvest had been well prepared thanks to a cool spring, light rainfall (more or less 500mm with the last rain at the beginning of April) but well spaced. Ripening was slightly delayed, but the summer was very favourable until the end of July. At the beginning of August an African anticyclone brought three weeks of high temperatures without a pause. South-western Sicily was the region that suffered most of the heat, which was more intense than in the east. Thus it was necessary to bring the first part of the vintage forward and to give special attention to the harvest; the grapes in question were few but good. Some varieties responded well, due to their intrinsic characteristics, to these conditions – particularly Grecanico, Grillo and Syrah – while others needed more careful selection and faster harvesting (Chardonnay and Nero d’Avola). The second part of the vintage, from 20th August onwards, saw a much improved and almost ideal climate which gained us quality and a slower harvest of red grapes, allowing for a more gradual ripening. Thus at Menfi, more powerful reds but not excessively so, rounder whites and intense reds.