Grillo Wine: The Hidden Treasure of Sicilian Hinterland
The Vino Vino Situation gets deep into the heart of Sicily to discover Grillo wine
This week’s wine, Grillo, comes from the heart of Sicily. You may be more familiar with Sicily’s coasts, but there’s more to the island than stunning coastlines and beach coves!
In fact, Grillo wines are the product of the Sicilian hinterland. The inner part of the island may be wild to the point of looking abandoned, but still incredibly charming. The beauty of Sicily is that its landscapes are extremely varied, ranging from sea level to mountains. Just consider that Mount Etna, a volcano on the east coast, is more than 10,990 feet high!
RELATED: 20 Italian Wines You Should Know, One for Each Region
Grillo wine is made with Grillo grapes, a variety native to Sicily. Remember Marsala, the Sicilian dessert wine? Well, Grillo is also used to make fortified Marsala wines. It is now more commonly used in a variety of still white wines, both varietal and blended.
If you know some Italian, the name Grillo may puzzle you. Why would you call a wine “cricket”? It’s not entirely clear, but according to some research, it refers to its production being a little discontinuous and “jumpy”, so to say!
Grillo Wine Di Giovanna
If you want to try a Grillo wine, you should start from Cantina Di Giovanna Grillo Sicilia. The Di Giovanna vineyards are located in Contessa Entellina, a territory that’s particularly prone to the cultivation of this native variety.
Remember what I said about the varied landscapes of Sicily? Their vineyards are located at elevations that range from 900 to 2,800 feet above sea level!
The winery itself is near the quaint village of Sambuca di Sicilia, which was named Italy’s most beautiful village in 2016. Not bad, uh? The company is run by Gunther and Klaus, the sons of Aurelio e Barbara Di Giovanna.
RELATED: Find Southern Italian Specialties at Sotto Los Angeles
Besides the focus on organic farming, they also made an important vineyard zonation and selection, in order to bring the terrain back at 100% in the final product.
The result? The Di Giovanna Grillo wine has an intense straw-yellow color and a smell of flowers, citrus, and pineapple, with a balsamic and herbaceaous hint. On the palate, it is full bodied, mineral, with an almond-y bitter aftertaste and a strong persistence.
If you ever get a chance, make sure to explore Sicily far and wide. Until then, fill your glass with Grillo wine and enjoy it with bold and flavorful seafood dishes.
Enjoy your wine!
Wine maker: Di Giovanna
Name: Grillo Sicilia IGP
Type: Still white wine
Grapes: About $15
Price: Grillo 100%
Working in wineries across Italy, I get to see how much passion goes into each bottle. With the Vino Vino Situation, every week I recommend great Italian wines. These reviews are unsponsored and unsolicited. Salute!
Get our free newsletter to keep up-to-date on the best Italian food, wines, and restaurants in the LA area.