Passopisciaro, Etna, Sicily
The Palmento Costanzo vineyards are inside the Mount Etna national park, on the northern slopes of Mount Etna, in Contrada Santo Spirito, Passopisciaro. The vivid airs and colors of the area are testimony to their location close to the most active volcano in Europe. This is a unique, elemental and diverse terrain, capped by a volcano that reached up to 11,000 feet. The winery totals seven vineyards spread over 35 acres of land situated between 1,950 to 2,600 feet above sea level. The vines are planted on typical terraces supported by dry walls and in the volcanic stones. About 50,000 vines are trained in the ancient Greek bush system, with ages ranging up to 120 years old. The vineyards are farmed exclusively using manual viticulture and following the principles of organic agriculture. The cellar, locally known as Palmento was meticulously restored using a design to safeguard the Etna landscape and to reproduce as much as possible, the traditional wine-making process of the area. Starting with the 2011 vintage, Mimmo and Valeria Costanzo craft their wines helped by a team of young, motivated and local workers.