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Report 2023 on the Menfi DOC

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The 2023 Report published by the Observatory on the Menfi DOC speaks out clearly: Menfi is the 5th "small" Sicilian DOC by number of bottles produced.

Officially presented during the celebrations for "Menfi Città del Vino 2023", the Report shows the constant growth of the Menfi DOC both in terms of certified wines and of bottles produced, and declares the consolidated relevance of Menfi Region among the most interesting Sicilian wine-growing areas.

Let's have a look at the most relevant data.

 

GRAPE VARIETIES

Menfi has always been the place for viticultural experimentation, and is home to several dozen grape varieties grown on about 3,600 hectares, 455 of which are registered with the DOCs (Menfi and Sicily), and 3,127 are used to produce grapes for IGT and table wines.

More than half the vineyards in Menfi are planted with international grapes, ranging from the classic Chardonnay, Merlot, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon to less common types such as Petit Manseng, Tannat, Chenin Blanc.

Different Italian grape varieties are also present. Some of them (such as Pinot Grigio or Vermentino) are mainly used for the production of bulk wines "exported" to the Northern Regions where they historically belong; some other Italian grapes are blended for making table or IGT wines.

The most interesting native grapes planted here are Grecanico Dorato, Catarratto (both biotypes comune and lucido), Nero d'Avola, and Inzolia - some farmers also grow Sicilian varieties that historically belong to other areas such as Carricante, Nerello Mascalese and Frappato.

Vitigni coltivati nella DOC Menfi 2023

 

WINE PRODUCTION

Although the overall extension of the vineyards in Menfi is very significant, the average area actually destined to the DOC every year is about 185 hectares, and the production of DOC grapes represents only a very small part of the whole harvest.

In any case, data show a positive evolution of the overall wine production. The number of Menfi DOC bottles has slowly but steadily increased over the past 10 years, and Menfi holds today the 5th position among the smaller Sicilian appellations.

DOC siciliane 2022 bottiglie prodotte

Data analysis on the wine production trend over the last decade shows a constant increase in volume, both in terms of issued certificates and of bottles produced, with a total of 608,000 units made in 2022.

Following the area's tradition, producers focus mainly on white wines, with or without mentioning the variety. Chardonnay accounts for over 40%, followed by Grillo and Fiano, each just over 8%. Among the reds, Syrah and Nero d'Avola (both vintage and Riserva) represent just under 5%, while Rosé wines make up just 1% of the bottles produced.

 Vino imbottigliato DOC Menfi 2023

 

Tags: Menfi DOC, Menfi, Osservatorio DOC Menfi

THE SHORT STORY

THE SHORT STORY

Grape variety: Inzolia grown in Dietro le Case vineyard
Soil: clay soil with calcareous components, very rich in limestones and sea minerals
Vineyard: planted in 1960s, head-trained bush vines
Winemaking: skin contact for 48 hours in steel tanks
Alcoholic fermentation: spontaneous, with wild yeast
Malolactic fermentation: spontaneous
Refining: 4 months on fine lees, in steel tanks
Aging: one oak barrel, where it ages in perpetuum with its sediment
Average production: a few dozen bottles every some years

Download wine sheet

WINEMAKING

The grapes are handpicked the first half of September, when they are fully ripe. The traditional pruning system - called "a pezzo e spalla" - and the age of the vines, allow slow constant ripening cycles and a great aromatic concentration.

The fermentation is spontaneous, with 2 days skin contact. After soft pressing, the fermentation continues for 8 days in steel tanks. After malolactic is completed, the wine refines on fine lees for about 4 months and is then racked into one single oak barrel, where it ages in perpetuum with its sediment.

The wine is bottled directly from the barrel no more than 2-3 times every decade.

TASTING NOTES

Altrimenti has a bright amber color, enlivened by golden hues. Its nose is predominantly tertiary, where fruity notes of apricot and ripe figs blend onto an intense and aromatic herbal background, enriched by roasted and dried nuts.

It is dry and full bodied to the palate, with a distinct savory personality that harmoniously meets a tannic finish.

SERVING TEMPERATURE: 54 - 58 °F
Pour Altrimenti in wide glasses, at a fresh but not chilled temperature.
Please avoid freezers and blast chillers, as well as a prolonged time in your home refrigerator: this wine is not filtered nor fined, and any temperature below 40 °F will mortify its complex aromas.

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