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Hauner Salina Hiera 2015

Nero d'Avola from Sicily, Italy
    13.5% ABV
    • RP92
    • WE90
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    13.5% ABV

    Winemaker Notes

    Deep, dark ruby, with crimson highlights, the wine's fiery intensity of aromas and flavors is well worthy of its island home. Very rich, fragrant bouquet of wild berries, sweet spice, tobacco and chocolate with earthy notes characteristic of dry soil; a velvety, complex, full-bodied palate with sweet tannins, fresh, fruity flavors and acidity, wonderful balance and a luscious, bright style.

    Wonderful paired with flavorful and slightly spicy dishes or fresh tuna with capers, typical of the Aeolian Islands.

    Blend: 60% Nero d'Avola, 30% Alicante, 10% Nocera

    Critical Acclaim

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    Hauner

    Hauner

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    Hauner, Sicily, Italy
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    In the 1980s, Carlo inaugurated a brand new winery at Lingua, in the commune of Santa Marina Salina, with temperature-controlled equipment, stainless steel vats and tanks, oak barrels and barriques, totaling 1,200 hectoliters in capacity. The Hauner winery acted as a magnet and a catalyst to critics, wine writers, enologists, other growers and the media: Carlo Hauner had triggered a renaissance not only of the islands' most celebrated wine but of the islands themselves, which in due course were inscribed in UNESCO's World Heritage List.

    After the state-of-the-art new winery was implemented, the Hauner range saw several additions. In February 1996, Carlo Hauner, Sr.'s demise did not put an end to the winery's exceptional story thanks to Carlo's dynamic son, Carlo Hauner, Jr., who is flanked by general manager Gianfranco Sabbatino.

    A large, geographically and climatically diverse island, just off the toe of Italy, Sicily has long been recognized for its fortified Marsala wines. But it is also a wonderful source of diverse, high quality red and white wines. Steadily increasing in popularity over the past few decades, Italy’s fourth largest wine-producing region is finally receiving the accolades it deserves and shining in today's global market.

    Though most think of the climate here as simply hot and dry, variations on the sun-drenched island range from cool Mediterranean along the coastlines to more extreme in its inland zones. Of particular note are the various microclimates of Europe's largest volcano, Mount Etna, where vineyards grow on drastically steep hillsides and varying aspects to the Ionian Sea. The more noteworthy red and white wines that come from the volcanic soils of Mount Etna include Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Cappuccio (reds) and Carricante (whites). All share a racy streak of minerality and, at their best, bear resemblance to their respective red and white Burgundies.

    Nero d’Avola is the most widely planted red variety, and is great either as single varietal bottling or in blends with other indigenous varieites or even with international ones. For example, Nero d'Avola is blended with the lighter and floral, Frappato grape, to create the elegant, Cerasuolo di Vittoria, one of the more traditional and respected wines of the island.

    Grillo and Inzolia, the grapes of Marsala, are also used to produce aromatic, crisp dry whites. Pantelleria, a subtropical island belonging to the province of Sicily, specializes in Moscato di Pantelleria, made from the variety locally known as Zibibbo.

    Nero d'Avola

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    Opulent with bold fruit and robust tannins, Nero d’Avola is Sicily’s most widely planted red grape, though the variety's other name, Calabrese, suggests origins from the mainland region of Calabria. Popular throughout Sicily and prized for its body, color and deep cherry fruit, Nero d’Avola performs well both as a single varietal bottling and in blends. It loves hot, arid climates and Sicily's old vines are aptly head-trained close to the ground, making them resistant to strong winds. A few pioneering producers in California as well as Australia farm Nero d’Avola in the same way.

    In the Glass

    A couple of styles of Nero d’Avola are possible. The first is typically a powerful, opulent, dark fruit driven style with notes of coffee or cocoa from aging in wood. A second style offers up a snappier version with red cherry fruit and herbal notes, having seen little to no oak during aging.

    Perfect Pairings

    Nero d’Avola’s black fruit and spicy flavors are perfect with rich flavors like grilled meat or stews, but can also be a great compliment to burgers, pizza or pasta.

    Sommelier Secret

    If you love big, bold wines like Napa Cabernet and Châteauneuf-du-Pape but want to stick to a budget, look no further than Nero d’Avola for a worthy substitute. Even the best examples often run under $20.

    WWH145403_2015 Item# 256565