Rica Terra Nero d'Avola 2018
Nero d'Avola｜Riverland, South Australia
The Riverland wine region in South Australia, is hot – literally and figuratively. For decades it was the largest bulk producer, pumping out mass amounts of low-quality fruit for the export market's "critter labels" blends (ahem, Yellow Tail). Today, however you'll find some of the best up-and-coming producers making seriously delicious yet still affordable finely crafted cuvées, like this gem from Rica Terra.
Behold, then, Rica Terra, a new project from Ashley and Holly Ratcliff. After battling recurring droughts in Riverland, they grew frustrated with constantly irrigating and the climatic issues associated with dumping so much water in the vineyard. That frustration led them to search for more drought-tolerant Mediterranean varieties such as this Nero d'Avola. Originally native to Sicily, the grape has emigrated to many corners of the wine world. The Ratcliffs found that Nero grown in Riverland required much less water and was well suited to the hot, dry growing season here.
Combined with their dedication to hand harvesting, organic farming, and gentle, natural winemaking they've succeeded in crafting unique, approachable, and utterly delicious reds. We're loving this Nero d'Avola with its generous bouquet of succulent cherries, brambly black fruit, menthol, graphite, and smoky earthy notes. A medium to full-bodied red, it balances juicy new-world ripeness with a savory, tart finish.
We are one of just a handful places in the U.S. to have this juicy Aussie red, and loving it with cold-weather fare. Happy drinking!