• Joey Amato

Cantine Ermes introduces its organic wines to the US



Hailing from Sicily, Cantine Ermes represents one of the biggest wine companies in Southern Italy, a co-op that has regenerated a damaged territory into a fruitful and sustainable ground for winemaking.


Under the helm of New York based agency Platinum Media, Cantine Ermes is launching its communication campaign in the US, introducing a select ensemble of their Vento di Mare organic wine collection.


Cantine Ermes was founded in the heart of Sicily’s Belice Valley, an area infamously known for the 1968 earthquake that wiped out a vast surface of the island. Thirty years later, a group of nine young winemakers decided to embark on a path of reconstruction of the land taking advantage of everything it had to offer, forming what is today the biggest wine co-op in the region.


Vento di Mare includes both indigenous grapes, such as Grillo, Nero d’Avola and Nerello Mascalese, and international vines such as Pinot Noir and Pinot Grigio. These wines come from vineyards cultivated in areas specifically composed by clay, lime, and sandy soil. Wind is also key in the production of Vento di Mare, which translates into “wind from the sea,” being close to western coast of Sicily, the soil is indeed exposed to winds coming from south-east (Sirocco) and from the north (Tramontane).


These vineyards are cultivated through organic farming using techniques such as the green manure, which consists in turning different crop varieties into the soil to improve its overall quality; and using fertilizers derived from animals.


Cantine Ermes exports the following wines in the US, each with its own unique characteristic:


- Nerello Mascalese: A red wine produced in sandy soil in the western part of Sicily, it has a characteristic color that tends to a garnet nuance, with an intense aroma with hints of wild berries and spicy notes. On the palate the wine is elegant, well-structured and excellently harmonious (13.5% abv.)


- Nero d’Avola: A deep red wine with purple tones. The nose provides a mix of red cherry and raspberry. The palate is true to the nose with primary red berry and a mineral like acidity. A medium bodied profile, the wine is rounded by subtle tannins and a fruity finish (13.5% abv.)


- Grillo: A straw wine colored with olive green hues. This elegant Grillo displays a complex mix of tropical fruits and Mediterranean citrus. On the palate is fresh with naturally crispy acidity combined with hints of yellow melon and tropical fruit (12.5% abv.)

- Pinot Grigio: It is produced from organic grapes grown in picturesque vineyards located on the sunny island of Sicily. It is straw yellow in color. It has an intense bouquet of tropical fruit, pears and citrus. On the palate it is medium bodied, crispy and perfectly balanced, supple and refreshing (12,5% abv)


- Pinot Noir: Distinguished by garnet red to purplish color, the wine is softly tannic, with an intense and ethereal scent of wild berries, in particular black cherry, and a full and persistent flavor (13,5% abv)


The co-op Cantine Ermes is one of the most important producers of organic grapes in Sicily, and throughout the years (1998-2021) has reached 2.257 members and around 25.830 acres of vineyards located amongst Trapani, Agrigento and the Palermo's district. Today, one third of these vineyards is organic.