Benanti 2022 Etna Bianco

In stock

Etna is one of Italy's most exciting DOCs; we have been championing the superb wines from here for several years. Our latest addition is the wines from Benanti, one of the region's pioneering families. We have made a start with this superb producer by introducing their estate red, and this, their estate white. 

Etna is one of the few places in Italy where the whites and reds are of equal quality - the whites are given distinction by the classy Carricante variety, which is 100% of this wine. This noble variety is a vehicle for Etna's superb terroir, allowing the minerality and savouriness to come to the fore, and always with bright acidity.

Grape Varieties

Drink 2023 - 2031



Size / ABV

Standard Bottle 75cl / 12.5%

This Month's Mixed Cases

The Region



Sicily is on a roll. It is a vast vineyard, 2nd largest after Veneto, of course producing wines at all quality levels, but a surprisingly high average. During the 1990s it was all about international varieties, but ever since, the Island has learned to celebrate its native varieties and now more than ever there are great reasons to look here for top quality wines. There are many DOCs, but the vast majority of wine is produced at IGT level. Producers have a little more freedom to experiment with varieties and winemaking techniques, without being hampered by local DOC laws, in the same way that Languedoc in France has done. Because of this, we tend to think of Sicily as the 'New World' of Italy.

The story begins with Nero d'Avola: the most widely planted of the black varieties here. The average quality is high, but it only gets so good. If you want to seek wines of greater distinction and delicacy, then look towards Etna. This smoking volcano is home to some of Italy's most exciting wines, and is progressing at such a break-neck pace, we can hardly keep up. This year sees the release of the first wines from Idda, a collaboration between Gaja of Piedmont and Alberto Graci, a native of the island and wine producer in Etna. We have also been won over by the delights of the whites of this DOC, most notably the wines of Santa Maria La Nave, who are making two extraordinary wines.


Volcanic Wines

Volcanic wines, a fascinating category within oenology, derive their distinct characteristics from the geological composition of volcanic soils. These rock formations and soils, formed by ancient lava and ash deposits, impart unique mineral nuances to the grapes. High minerals like potassium, magnesium, and iron influence the vines' growth and the subsequent wine profile.

Volcanic wines often exhibit pronounced acidity, attributed to the soil's poor water retention, which stresses the vines and promotes high-quality grape development. The mineral-rich environment encourages gradual ripening and imparts a remarkable complexity to the final product. Sulphur and volcanic gases in the soil may influence the wine's aromatic compounds and ageing potential.

Furthermore, the porous nature of volcanic soils aids root penetration, extracting distinct flavour compounds from deep within the earth. This intricate interplay of geological elements results in wines with a captivating interplay of minerality, vibrant acidity, and a sense of place that truly reflects the tumultuous origins of their vineyards.

For further reading, we recommend John Szabo's comprehensive book on Volcanic Wines: Salt, Grit and Power.

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