Altero, Nero d’ Avola
It’s an ironic twist, but as a
It must have been the English teachers I had for parents but as a
Being surrounded on three sides by water, the cooling sea breezes make it a climate which is as “Mediterranean” as you’ll find in Australia. Historically, the region has gained a reputation for high-quality shiraz, but more recently innovative
And for former Chief Red Winemaker for Penfolds, Mike Farmillo it was the Spanish and Italian styles that he predicted would fare best in the local climate. Such was his confidence in the locale that he has recently launched a new range under the Altero brand – a collection that includes Montepulciano, Tempranillo and Nero d’Avola.
All of the fruit for Mike’s latest venture comes from the vineyards of Vicky and Pat Vasarelli at Currency Creek in the Southern Fleurieu Peninsula. Eschewing the tried and trusted local staples of Sauvignon blanc, Chardonnay, cabernet and shiraz, the Vasarelli paddocks have been farmed to produce fruit that will share the character of the berries from each varietal’s homeland.
Of the three styles I tried, the Nero d’Avola was my pick. In tune with the Sicilian ideology, the Altero example was bright, youthful and still had enough body to fill the mouth and satisfy the senses. On the nose there were hints of tobacco, gum leaf and cherry while on the palate, flavours of plum, pepper and spice emerged but without the chewiness of a tannic cabernet or the over-ripeness of some warm climate shiraz. The tannins are understated, and are careful not to disturb the brightness of the blue and purple berries. There’s a nice balance of acid and fruit and it’s undeniably fresh, lively and crying out to be served with herb encrusted lamb cutlets on a bed of egg plant!
Nero d‘ Avola may not be a varietal that is
Click here to listen to Travis’s review of Altero, Nero d’ Avola