The father-son team of Giovanni and Alessandro Valenti have embarked upon the journey to produce the very best wines from their homeland of Mount Etna in Sicily. Being avid lovers of literature and music, the names of their wines reflect this passion. Enrico IV, Henry IV (Enrico IV) is an Italian play by Luigi Pirandello; Puritani – I puritani (The Puritans) is an opera in three acts by Vincenzo Bellini; Norma is an opera in two acts by Vincenzo Bellini. Poesia is Poetry in Italian.
Showing a dark ruby appearance, the 2012 Etna Rosso Puritani embraces a traditional side of Etna winemaking. The nose is likable and bright but I really must underline how rich and seductive the color is. There are some quirky impurities on the bouquet and maybe a touch of volatile acidity with soapy floral aromas and apple skin. Those aromas lift to reveal dark berry, dusty mineral tones and light spice. The tannins show a slightly gritty texture. Puritani is aged in large oak casks and fruit is sourced from the Guardiola Contrada with vines that are to 80-years-old. In summary, this is an enjoyable wine with a untamed personality. I’d suggest a shorter drinking window for this Etna Rosso. Giovanni Valenti and his team farm 40 hectares of vineyards that range from 600 to 1,000 meters above sea level. This year, Valenti presented a good line up and a really terrific Rosato Poesia that I highly recommend. I was a little unsure of the estate’s top wine, the Etna Rosso Puritani, but it won me over after a few repeat visits to the glass. The house style embraces Etna tradition and that means the wines are a little more unruly and rustic than most. Valenti works with consulting enologist Emiliano Falsini.
This opens with earthy aromas that recall woodland berry, leather and a scorched earth. The medium-bodied palate offers ripe red cherry, licorice and a hint of toasted nut alongside firm tannins.