Marsala

26-27 May 2015

Marsala, a small city in the West of Sicily, is famous for it’s Marsala wine.
Marsala wine is a fortified wine made exclusively in and around Marsala. It was discovered by the English trader John Woodhouse in 1773 after he added alcohol to the wine to preserve the oversea voyage.

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We visited the famous Cantine Florio (founded in 1833) to learn more about the Marsala-making process, and to taste some of their Marsala wines.

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Depending on the amount of sugar added to the wine, it tastes dry (secco), semi sweet (semisecco) or sweet (dolce). We learned that Marsala secco and semisecco go well with cheeses or dark chocolate. Marsala dolce goes well with deserts.

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One evening we enjoyed an amazing Marsala wine. It’s from Cantine Intorcia and is called “Francesco Intorcia Vergine Riserva 3gen 1980”.

This more than 30 year old Marsala wine recently won a gold medal at the International competition “Concours Mondial de Bruxelles 2015”. 

It is semisecco and very rich in flavour. It tastes absolutely fantastic and is a must-try for those who like Port, Madeira or Sherry!

 

 

Next to Marsala wine we tasted two different white wines from Abbazia Santa Anastasia: Sinestia and Chardonnay (slightly sparkling). Both 2014 wines are dry, a bit fruity and go very well with fish.

Interestingly, the Abbazia Santa Anastasia vineyard used to belong to the Mafia, but in the 90s the Italian state took it from them.

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Marsala is one of our favourite cities in Sicily. It has a pleasant atmosphere, lots of historic architecture and cute restaurants.

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Walking through the streets of Marsala we found Enoteca ‘la Sirena Ubriaca’ where they serve wonderful Marsala wines together with delicious little snacks. 

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On the coast between Marsala and Trapani you can find ancient salt-pans. These saline are still used to produce sea salt.

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