Above: grower and winemaker Fabio Sireci of Feudo Montoni in Sicily. Read this post on the estate by one of my favorite English-language wine writers, Michael Godel.
Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone!
As our Thursday night virtual winemaker dinner series at Roma restaurant in Houston continues, I couldn’t be more thrilled to host grower and winemaker Fabio Sireci and cookbook author Melissa Muller of Feudo Montoni this week on our Zoom call.
Not many folks in the U.S. know these extraordinary wines from inland, mountainous Sicily.
While Vittoria and Etna wines have become increasingly popular in the U.S., Fabio, now joined by Melissa, has simply continued to quietly make and release wines that Italian wine insiders have followed for nearly two decades now.
On Thursday evening, we’ll be sending guests home with the Vrucara, his top wine, a single-vineyard 100 percent Nero d’Avola that — in my view — sets the benchmark for the grape variety.
I use to feature it on my list at Sotto in Los Angeles and it was always amazing to watch people’s light up when they first tasted the wine.
The wine alone is worth the cost of admission. $119 sends you home with dinner for two and a bottle of the Vrucara. Trust me, you won’t regret it.
Fabio and Melissa are organic farmers. And that’s a cool thing, no doubt. But it’s the biodiversity of their farm — the polyculture or diversity of crops as opposed to monoculture — that really makes these wines sing and speak of place, as we say in the biz.
The story of how they met could have been plucked from a Coppola epic. But you’ll have to join the call to hear them tell it.
I hope you can be there. Thanks for the support and thanks for loving Italian wine!