I often find wine shops rather disappointing, rather like a child visiting a sweet shop who discovers that all the lovely brightly coloured and wrapped goodies are sadly behind glass – quite regularly I find myself looking at rows of wines with little information about them beyond the label, distant staff and mostly no opportunity to try wines with any suitable food.
NOT so with Emily’s wine in Noto, South East Sicily. Owned and run by Maurizio Cannella a well qualified Italian sommelier who has a quiet passion for the wines of Sicily. Importantly, as far as I am concerned, you can have a generous tasting plate of various local cheeses, hams and caponata (a mix of cooked aubergine, olives and tomatoes) whilst you try the wines of Etna, the regional Nero d’Avola grape varietal as well as the amber and delicious sweet Moscato from Pantelleria, to name a but a few of what Maurizio offers in his small emporium. Whilst you will not find any bargains, you will find some really interesting small producers and some very good wine. We bought some fabulous Passito, another type of sweet wine, which is really hard to get hold of in the UK.
Unsurprisingly Emily’s now features on Tripadvisor, and also in the Rough Guide to Sicily. Don’t go expecting a smart shop, do go with curiosity and the ability to speak some Italian will help. We spent a rainy afternoon in the shop, time flew by, Maurizio also offers free wifi so you can do further research on the wines or even catch up on emails.
If only more independent wine shops in the UK were like this one!