Sicily rediscovers six indigenous grape varieties previously thought extinct (Imbibe)

Six indigenous Sicilian winegrapes previously deemed lost have been rediscovered and added to the Italian National Register of Grape Varieties. The six grapes are the reds Inzolia Nera, Lucignola, Orisi, Usirioto and Vitrarolo, and the white Recunu.

download
Inzolia Nera

It’s an extremely significant achievement for the protection of the Sicilian viticultural heritage,’ commented Edgardo Bandiera of the Sicilian Council of Agriculture.

This has been possible thanks to the work undertaken by the region’s technicians. They researched historical grape varieties in marginal viticultural areas of the Madonie and Nebrodi mountain ranges, as well as private gardens across the whole of Sicily, where people have been cultivating vines for home winemaking for centuries.’

The addition to the register is the result of a 15-year research project led by the Marsala branch of the University of Palermo in collaboration with Marsala’s winegrowers, such as Gemma Spano Bresina, and growers across the larger region.

download (1)Winegrower Stefano Girelli, who presented his wines to the UK on-trade last October, was another of the participating parties. He is now experimenting with 8,000 vines of the high-acidity, tannic Orisi grape at his Santa Teresa estate.

Sicily is an increasingly popular wine–producing region, a development assisted by high-quality wines made with indigenous varieties such as Nerello Mascarese and Carricante on Mount Etna. The addition of these six historical grape vines to the National Register is a sign that the island is actively investing in its own viticultural heritage and in fostering its image as a top wine-producing region.

The University of Palermo is currently studying over four thousand indigenous grape varieties – some of which could be added to the National Register in the future.

Inzolia Nera
Red – A cross of Sangiovese and an unknown variety, currently cultivated sparsely around the city of Trapani. It produces red wines with little colour, a light body and a spicy nose.
Lucignola
Red – A cross of Sangiovese and an unknown variety. Rediscovered in the Nebrodi Mountains. It results in high-alcohol and high-acidity wines.
Orisi
Red – A cross of Sangiovese and Montonico Bianco. Rediscovered in the Nebrodi mountains. It results in tannic, medium-alcohol and high-acidity wines.
Usirioto
Red – No information on its parentage currently available. Rediscovered in the Nebrodi mountains. Resulting wines have medium alcohol, little colour and scents of red fruits and spices.
Vitrarolo
Red – Rediscovered in the Nebrodi mountains. The name originates from the Sicilian word for glass (vitru), as the stalks assume a glass-like appearance in the winter and break easily. It gives wines with a deep ruby colour, high alcohol, high tannins, and a nose of spices and ripe red fruits.
Recunu
White – Found around Mount Etna and around the city of Messina. It is naturally high in acid.

Here the original article.

I vini siciliani da uve antiche e quasi estinte: 6 nuove varietà nel registro nazionale

Da sempre la Sicilia cerca un modo per custodire le antiche varietà di vitigni, alcune delle quali addirittura a rischio estinzione. 

download
Inzolia Nera

In uno dei progetti più importanti della regione sono oltre 4 mila i varietali che vengono coltivati e osservati, in pochi ettari (circa una ventina), a Marsala presso l’azienda Gemma Spano Bresina e a Comiso nei terreni dell’azienda San Pietro. In tutto 47.000 piante. Un caso felice e raro. Una ricerca esemplare che comincia a dare i primi frutti. Già al Vinitaly del 2017 si era tenuta una degustazione storica con 5 vini ottenuti da altrettanti 5 specie di uve coltivate qui e recuperate dall’antica memoria. Oggi arriva un’altra importante notizia. Perché su proposta dell’Assessorato Regionale siciliano per l’Agricoltura e nello specifico del Centro Vivaio F. Paulsen, 6 nuove varietà di vite da vino sono state iscritte ufficialmente al Registro nazionale delle varietà di vite. Cinque sono a bacca rossa. Si tratta di Inzolia nera, Lucignola, Orisi, Usirioto e Vitrarolo. Quello a bacca bianca è invece il Recunu. Continue reading “I vini siciliani da uve antiche e quasi estinte: 6 nuove varietà nel registro nazionale”