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Planeta Santa Cecilia 2010

Nero d'Avola from Sicily, Italy
  • JS92
  • WE91
13.8% ABV
  • WE95
  • RP93
  • WE94
  • JS93
  • RP93
  • WS90
  • WE91
  • RP90
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13.8% ABV

Winemaker Notes

A vibrant purplish red color in the glass. Aromas of red fruit such as plums and berries mingle with notes of carob, pepper and fig preserve. An elegant wine with compact tannins. It fills the mouth with its balanced texture and distinctive and pleasurable tang. This wine is Planeta's interpretation of Nero d'Avola from the southeast of Sicily.

This wine is wonderful with all meat-based and southern Italian dishes, as well as mushroom dishes and smoked ham.

Critical Acclaim

All Vintages
JS 92
James Suckling
Lovely tangy fruit with focused sour cherry and berry character. Full to medium body and a lovely core of fruit. Fine tannins. Made from nero d'avola. Drink or hold.
WE 91
Wine Enthusiast
Santa Cecilia opens with the aromas that define the Nero d’Avola grape. There are touches of almond and Bronte pistachio, followed by blackberry, plum and cherry notes. A smoky mineral tone appears on the finish, and the wine is fresh and well structured.
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Planeta

Planeta

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Planeta, Sicily, Italy
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The Planeta family had been cultivating vines in the region of Manfi and Sambuca di Sicilia, not far from Agrigento, for more than 300 years. The company is managed today by the new generation under the direction of Diego Planeta, President since 1972, of the local cooperative and an influential figure in the increase of awareness of quality wines in this region. Other family members occupy full-time roles in the company. Alessio, with the help of Marcello, is in charge of vineyard management, Francesca looks after sales and marketing. Chiara deals with public relations and Giovanni handles administration - truly a family-fun operation. The two properties which make up the estate, Ulmo and Dispensa, both have north-west facing vineyards located at about 250 meters above sea level. Vines are trained on vertical trellises using double Guyot systems. Ulmo, which began production in 1985, has 45 hectares of vineyard, production from the 37 hectares at the Dispensa estate began with the 1997 vintage.

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.

RPT52256403_2010 Item# 139696