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Vendemmia – Grape Harvest in Mascali, Sicily –

September 22, 2013

It is so much fun to join some lively folks and harvest grapes.  This year, I joined the Messina family and their friends in Mascali and we all had a wonderful time.  We picked grapes for about three hours; then the wine making process  began in the “palmento”, an old lava rock structure which dates back centuries.  The vineyard lies at 300 meters above sea level on the foothills of Mt. Etna.  The grapes, Nerello Mascalese, are native to this specific spot.  Of course, after the “hard” work, there were 30 hungry folks sitting at the tables enjoying some scrumptious food!

A view of the coast from the terrace of  the Messina family home    


This is a good harvest season!




The machine which has replaced “stomping”


Watching the mosto flow into the lava tanks



I’ll be going back tomorrow for the next step in the process

  1. pamela permalink

    What fun photos! I love the lucious grapes in the baskets. so rustic. Will you get to taste the wine from last year?


    • I did taste the wine from last year! With regards to this year’s wine, tradition calls for it to be drunk for the first time on November 11th, the day of San Martino. On that day, folks drink the new wine and eat chestnuts, as they say here: “San Martino, castagne e vino.”


  2. pamela permalink

    And how will the new wine taste, given that it has not really had a chance to sit that long and “stew”


  3. I have tasted the wine in November in the past and it tasted fine.

    I’m leaving Sicily in the morning, visiting family in UK, and then on to VA beginning October! I’m leaving beach weather and will jump right into Fall!


  4. pamela permalink

    Have a very safe and happy trip to the UK and then back to the states. I am hoping that THIS year I can get down to Va. to see you!


  5. Thank you. I am in England at this time and enjoying my family. Hope to see you in the States.


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