Winemaker Paolo Caciorgna has just under three hectares spread across the region. The volcano lies on the eastern side of Sicily and reaches a height of 11,000 feet. Viticulture dates back 2500 years, although it is only recently that the area has undergone an exciting renaissance. The DOC was granted in 1968. The soils are sandy and volcanic but evolve like no other vineyards due to the volcanic activity of Etna, which erupts regularly. There is also variation; the soils of the north face are not the same as those of the south. The soils are also difficult to work, though one must remember that it was this very character of the soils that enabled the region to withstand the attack of Phylloxera, meaning that today there are a lot of very old, ungrafted vines. The high altitude of the vineyards allows the vines some respite from the warmth of the day as it can cool down significantly in the evenings, which helps prevent the better wines from being too rich. Paolo’s vineyards are only planted with the Nero Macalese, a cross of sorts between Pinot Noir and Nebbiolo, which sounds quite exciting on paper and tastes quite exciting in the glass. The Ciauria wine is made from the younger vines, whilst the N’Anticchia comes from fruit from the pre-phylloxera vines. Both have wonderfully intense, perfumed aromatics. Colours are lightish, but there is weight and concentration, particularly in the top cuvée. They are both bursting with personality and are shining examples of what one of the world’s currently trendiest wine regions is capable of producing.