Frank Cornelissen

Susucaru Red 2017
Sicily, Italy $31.99

If you’re into natural wine, you’ve probably heard of Frank Cornelissen, the mad scientist of Etna.  Frank and his exciting Etna wines weren't on anybody’s radar until Action Bronson (New York chef-turned-rapper with a foodie show on Viceland called “F*ck That’s Delicious”) declared Susucaru to be the wine he has been waiting for his whole life, waxing poetic on his show and all over the internet.  It blew up, going from practically unknown to top 20 searches on Wine Searcher overnight. And yes, his wines deliver.  We are thrilled to capture his latest release for you.  A must try for anybody into Italian wine.

Susucaru "Rosso" is a pure and transparent portrait of Etna that traces with character the refined and mineral profile of Nerello Mascalese. It is born on the lava terraces of the northern part of the great volcano from sapling vines of 70-80 years. The wine is modulated by a great finesse and a fine mineral freshness,  the nose is also accompanied by an elegant bouquet of small red fruits, liquorice roots and peppery herbs.

Frank Cornelissen is the owner of 30 acres of vines high up on Mount Etna. He has been involved in wine his entire life. He is the son of a wine broker in Belgium and so has had the opportunity to be around wine on a professional level from a very young age.

There are a lot of details in his winemaking that affect the way that the wines end up, but for him it all starts in the vineyards. Frank isn't Sicilian so choosing Mount Etna was decision and not just happenstance. He chose Mount Etna for a few reasons, but the first was the soil. He feels that volcanic soils have a significant voice and, in concert with Etna's primary variety Nerello Mascalese, he could make a wine of great complexity and distinction.

In the winery his work follows the same philosophy of using what nature provides him. There are no yeasts, sulfites, or anything else added to the wines. The idea is to have wines that taste of grapes and terroir.