Montecarrubo. Wine, Vineyards, Life
Established in 2005 by Peter and Susie Vinding-Diers, Montecarrubo is a small estate situated on the remains of a volcano in Sicily, which exploded around two million years ago (but is still full of energy!). It lies near the town of Melilli with a view over the Ionian Sea and bay of Augusta, between Catania and Siracusa.
Having bought land that was simply grass and stones with pieces of old lava interspersed, they borrowed a huge bulldozer from a good friend. After ripping and ploughing they found two wonderful fields of perfect soil: light sand with fragments of coral reef to the West with deep loamy granulated black subsoil full of oxygen. And to the East, facing the Ionian Sea, a former seabed with fossilised sand. You could call this a paleolithic vineyard (sic).
It all lies on a lime plateau and below this more ancient lava with layers of loess and lime plus the famous coral reef.
The Vinding-Diers’ planted two Syrah vineyards in 2010, which produce wines that are rated amongst the best examples in Italy. To this, they have recently added a hectare of Grillo selected from the old Whitaker plantation on the Island of Mozia outside Marsala.
Peter is also working on a project to recover some ancient and long forgotten Sicilian red varieties that have a DNA of 3,000 years on this wild and wonderful island. They are showing to be highly suited to dry and hot climates and early findings in association with the experimental station in Marsala are extremely encouraging.
Montecarrubo is certified organic.
The wines are made in limited quantities and are available in a number of markets around the world. For further information, please contact us
Montecarrubo is also home to 1,300 mature Nocellara Etnea and Nocellara del Belice olive trees. These indigenous cultivars, farmed organically produce the most excellent organic extra virgin olive oil each autumn.
High in polyphenols, this delicious nectar is also extremely good for you.
In the interest of biodiversity, two large organic lavender fields have been planted recently to the delight of the local honeybee population.
Peter’s vast experience making wine in South Africa, Bordeaux, Brazil, Kenya, Spain, Chile and Hungary is nothing short of incredible - he is reknown for having revolutionised Graves by changing the style of white wines in 1979 (followed by Denis Dubourdieu in 1980); It is thanks to Peter that Rahoul was accepted into the Union des Grands Crus and Landiras into Les Grands Blancs de Bordeaux. In Hungary in the 90s he founded the Royal Tokaji Company with wine author Hugh Johnson, where he found the old 1700 classification and changed the style of wine back to its former pre-war and pre-communism style. This is a man who seeks out serious terroir and then treats it impeccably to allow it to realise its potential.
His autobiography 'Viking in the Vineyard' has been published in English in 2021 by The Acadamie du Vin Library. It is also available in Danish 'En håndfuld oliven og et glas vin’.
© Montecarrubo 2021