Wine Pairings for Bucatini con le Sarde
White: Alastro or Carricante from La Planeta
Rosato: Syrah Rosé from La Planeta
For this savory, sweet pasta, a wine with mineral notes and fruit undertones is what you’ll need. And, as the Italians would, why not go to the source of the dish in search of the right vino? Given the sardine element, reds are best avoided. The same goes for wines with any apparent oak-derived flavors. La Planeta, a winery in southwest Sicily, provides a one-stop shop. They make several whites and a rosato, and three of them work particularly well with this dish.
The two whites are both are made from local varieties. One is called Alastro and is made from 100% Grecanico. The wine ages on the lees (the dead yeast from the fermentation) at least six months, lending a savory quality to lush tree fruit flavors of the wine. The other is called Carricante and is made 100% from a grape of the same name. This Carricante is grown in Mount Etna’s volcanic soils. Volcanic soils give a polarizing personality to wines – one with extreme minerality. That minerality will pair up nicely with the saline sardine qualities of this pasta.
The rosato, actually labeled “Rosé,” is made from an international grape that you’ve likely encountered before: Syrah. The black pepper spiciness along side the red fruit flavors of this wine will, again, meet the savory-sweet combination of the pasta with great gusto.
If Planeta’s wines are not available, ask your favorite wine retailer for other Sicilian whites and rosatos…without oak…and you’re sure to wine-and-dine just like the (Sicilian) locals!
Christy Canterbury, Wine Editor