The Saracena Moscato wine has gained in recent years a prominent place within the national wines, going from the local culture and amateur production to be a noble and refined product, which since its commercialization in 2002 has obtained the most prestigious awards reaching the absolute pinnacle in 2013. Winning the three glasses award from “Gambero Rosso”, the 5 clusters of “Bibenda Duemilavini-AIS”, categorised as an excellent wine with 5 bottles awarded by the Italian wine Guide “l ‘Espresso”, the Corona de Vini Buoni d’Italia, great wine slow in the guide “Slow Wine”, and finally also has the mark of the Slow Food Presidium.
Viola is the name of the wine producer who brought into fashion this sweet muscat (moscato) wine that reaches a production of 7000 bottles a year and is now a much acclaimed award-winning product, but that at the same time is a few steps away from extinction.
The protagonist of this miracle rescue is Mr. Luigi Viola, a retired elementary school teacher lover of nature and agriculture and founder of the winery. With his enthusiasm got involved the whole family, his wife Margaret and three children Roberto, Alessandro and Claudio. There isn’t anything similar to this Calabrian nectar which is recognised by its unique taste derived from the winemaking process and gives it its unique taste, makes it a product of its own as a work of art.
Saracena is the oldest village in the province of Cosenza, where every year you renew your communal ritual that welds the present with the past through the notes from the elegant acidity of the Passito liquor which has a yellow colour with amber and golden reflections, intense aroma and with hints of honey, figs, apricots and citrus fruits. In the pastry world the Passito from Saracena is combined with raisin and almond paste, it is ideal to drink with the traditional Bocconotti and dried figs, but also good to accompanytraditional Pecorino cheeses and their drizzle of local honey.
The business vineyards are located at 400m above sea level on the hills dominated by the Pollino National Park that are characterised by clay soil and where the breezes blow the from Ionian Sea. In September we start with the Moscatelloharvest. The grapes are harvested by hand and left to dry in an aired room hanged bunch by bunch. In October we continue with the Guarnaccia and Malvasia grapes from which after a soft pressing you get a wine subject to boiling in order to increase the sugar content, then when cooled we combine the dehydrated Muscat berries from the Saracena that have been selected one by one and picked by hand to avoid breaking the grape and ruining their delicate taste.
After this a long fermentation process begins for then to be followed by a maceration process of six months before the grape is destalked. Once the nectar has been bottled is then kept in barrels for at least five months.
Today Viola Winery uses the specialized expertise of winemaker Mr. Alessio Dorigo and together they are engaged in the commercial development of the product throughout Italy and abroad. Also recently they have expanded the range with a stylish red wine derived as well from an indigenous type of vine called Magliocco which their skins produces an excellent grappa.
The fame of the Moscato Wine from Saracena has historical origins that have pushed the research of Prof. Pietro De Leo from the University of Calabria and a champion of the D.O.C. Author of an authoritative historical-scientific report that shows how this ancient grape went on horseback throughout the centuries ending on the Popes table.
Scientific research have demonstrated that the muscat wine has some healing properties as it contains a high concentration of antioxidants, as many as 40 times more than red wines, so, the Saracena grape is not only goodin taste but is also good for the health. Throughout Italy is served in the best restaurants such as the Hilton Hotel and La Pergola Restaurant, is also available in prestigious wine bars and recently has set foot in the USA, Australia, England and Denmark. The whole Viola family is committed to increase their production and markets for this traditional jewel that Mother Nature and the Viola’s passion has made it a world class within the wine world.