The Calabretta winery, founded in 1900, sits on the northern slopes of Mount Etna on the island of Sicily. Calabretta farms around seven hectares of 70- to 80-year-old vines, many ungrafted, on steep terraces at 1,000 to 3,000 feet above sea level. The soil from the active volcano is dark and rich in nutrients, ideal for producing terroir-based wines.
The estate operates much as it did a century ago: no chemical products are used, grapes are hand harvested, and fermentations are carried out using native yeasts. Fourth generation winemaker Massimiliano Calabretta eschews the use of chemical pesticides and herbicides, The winery is known for long aging their wines in large, old Slavonian botti, in the same manner as traditional Barolo and Brunello producers. The winery is featured in Slow Food’s Slow Wine guide.