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Frappato

Set amidst the sun-drenched countryside of south-eastern Sicily shines a little red gem that has contributed to making this land one of the most vocational and important in recent years. This is the Frappato, a red grape considered indigenous, but probably of Iberian origin. A characteristic that distinguishes this red wine is its intense aromas of black and red fruits. In Sicily, it is mainly grown in the Ragusano area, where, together with a great Sicilian red, Nero d'Avola, gives rise to the region's famous and only DOCG, Cerasuolo di Vittoria. It is not uncommon to find it vinified in purity, which allows it to express itself in all its delicacy, grace and freshness and therefore differentiates itself from the warm and intense classic Sicilian red wines.

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Set amidst the sun-drenched countryside of south-eastern Sicily shines a little red gem that has contributed to making this land one of the most vocational and important in recent years. This is the Frappato, a red grape considered indigenous, but probably of Iberian origin. A characteristic that distinguishes this red wine is its intense aromas of black and red fruits. In Sicily, it is mainly grown in the Ragusano area, where, together with a great Sicilian red, Nero d'Avola, gives rise to the region's famous and only DOCG, Cerasuolo di Vittoria. It is not uncommon to find it vinified in purity, which allows it to express itself in all its delicacy, grace and freshness and therefore differentiates itself from the warm and intense classic Sicilian red wines.

The History and Origins of an Important Native Vine

Like most Italian vines, its origins are lost in the mists of time. Only with careful and targeted genetic studies has it been possible to outline a more specific profile. It seems that Frappato originated on the Iberian peninsula and then spread from there to the Italian territory, according to an unconfirmed theory with little scientific basis. Recent studies have shown, however, that this variety was already present in the Ragusa area, particularly in the Vittoria district, in the 17th century and was called "frappatu", literally translated as "fruity", which is the characteristic that distinguishes its olfactory range. Other DNA studies have shown a similarity with Sangiovese and Gaglioppo grapes, although these red wines have a completely different profile.

Legend has it that in 1600 Queen Vittoria Colonna Henriquez, founder of the town of Vittoria, donated her land to settlers so that they could plant new vines and, in all probability, Frappato was among them. Its great success allowed the grape to spread throughout the island. Over the years, however, following the plagues of phylloxera and the planting of large international grapes, its production area shrank to the south-east of Sicily, mainly in the Ragusano area and to a small extent also in some areas of Syracuse, where it is also known as "Nero Capitano." The soils of compact clay with siliceous and calcareous sand components, the scorching southern sun, the Mediterranean climate and the gentle sea breezes have created the perfect conditions for growing this grape, allowing it to express all its typically fruity, gentle and refined aromatic qualities.



The Enological Expressions of Sicily

Normally, when one thinks of Sicilian wines, one thinks of powerful, intense reds that express the richness and warmth of this magnificent island. However, in addition to these wines, there is a rather simple and delicate red wine that expresses the more elegant side of the island's territory. This is the Frappato variety that comes from the grape of the same name, which has been cultivated for centuries in the provinces of Ragusa and Siracusa. It is a variety of medium vigour, with medium-sized, compact and pyramidal bunches. The berries are of normal size and have a very thick blue-purple skin, rich in bloom. Yields are low, ripening is quite late and the grapes are harvested between the end of September and the beginning of October. The liquids that emerge from these grapes are often matured only in steel to allow the fragrance of the fruit to express itself to its fullest. These are direct, delicate and fragrant expressions and Planeta Frappato offers one of its best interpretations. The berries have a transparent ruby red colour, not too intense, which recalls the colour of cherries. The bouquet is a mix of red and black fruits: blackberry, black cherry, raspberry and crunchy plum, wrapped in a light, spicy, smoky veil with lovely floral touches. On the palate, a pleasant freshness and satisfying tannins make for a delightful, clean and effortless drinking experience. However, there are also more complex and fuller versions, aged in oak barrels like the Frappato Occhipinti wine, which thanks to the characteristics of the wood offer many different facets. The scents are broader and more complex, and the toasted and peppery notes emerge with greater intensity. The taste also becomes softer and rounder, fleshy and sunny and is always characterised by a decisive and precious Mediterranean freshness.



What Can it be Paired With?

With its graceful and refined profile, this is an easy-to-pair and versatile red wine. It is at its best when served with simple, delicate dishes such as fish soups, chicken salads, omelettes and platters of local cured meats and medium-aged cheeses. It is also a perfect companion for first courses with meat sauce, mixed grills and boiled meats. We recommend opening a bottle of Frappato with a dish of aubergines and swordfish, pasta alla norma, ravioli with ricotta and sausage, arancini with meat sauce, the famous scaccia (made with vegetables, potatoes, caciocavallo cheese, sausage and olives) and lolli with beans.

Are you a lover of fine traditional cuisine and looking for the right red wine for your dinner? Buy the Frappato wine online on Callmewine now at a special price and try the best pairings with your dishes thanks to its surprisingly delicate taste.