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The Catarratto Grape


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About Catarratto

(Synonyms: Catarratteddu, Catarratto Bertolaro, Catarratto Bianco Comune, Catarratto Bianco Lucido, Catarratto Bianco Lucido Serrato, Catarratto Corteddaro, Catarratto Latino, Catarrattu Lu Nostrum.)

Background

Map showing Sicily

Catarratto (technically “Catarratto Blanco”) is a centuries-old white-wine grape originating in Sicily, which remains its present-day home. For a long time, Catarratto Bianco Comune and Catarratto Bianco Lucido were thought to be distinct varieties, but modern DNA analysis shows that they are simply variant clones, so that the single grape variety at issue is best called Catarratto Bianco, period.

The variety is grown all over Sicily, though concentrated in three provinces: Trapani, Palermo, and Agrigento. Traditionally, Catarratto wine was vinified as cheap bulk wine, usually made into sweet goop. With the coming of modern winemaking to Italy, some producers have turned to producing good-quality wine from the variety, with success. A well-made Catarratto has freshness and minerality, a good body, and citrus and herbal flavors. It may also exhibit slightly nut-like tastes. In some cases, the makers have applied some oak-barrel aging as well, which seems to work satisfactorily.

Although Catarratto is a component of Etna Bianco blends, it is restricted by law to a maximum of 40%, so such wines are not a good way to explore Catarratto.

Factoid: Apparently Italians like confusion: outside the area where Carricante wines—an altogether different grape—are made, the name Carricante is applied to Catarratto. There will be a quiz in the morning.

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Some Descriptions of Catarratto Wines

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Some Catarrattos to Try

(About this list.)

Another case of fine wines not widely available in the U.S. There are plenty of Catarratto wines available, but very few with anything like wide availability, and not many with critical notice taken. Here is what we could glean (and not all of these really have “wide” availability).


Feudo Montoni “Vigna del Masso” Catarratto

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks



Caruso & Minini “Naturalmente Bio” Catarratto

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks



Tasca d’Almerita “Tenuta Regaleali” Catarratto Antisa

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks



Donnafugata “Anthìlia”
(Predominantly Catarratto plus “other autochthonous and international varieties.”)

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks



Castellucci Miano “Miano” Catarratto
(Do not confuse this with their “Shiarà” bottling.)

• This wine’s Wine Searcher “Tasting Notes” page.
• This wine’s CellarTracker review pages.
• Retail offers of this wine listed by Wine Searcher
• Retail offers of this wine listed by 1000 Corks

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For a Splurge

We could find no reasonably available Catarratto wines better enough than those listed above as to justify a “splurge” price.

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This page was last modified on Monday, 23 March 2020, at 3:52 pm Pacific Time.