Much of the history of winemaking as we know it started in Sicily. The island’s ancient, gravity-flow wineries naturally and simplicistically emulated ideal winemaking conditions that can cost a fortune in modern wineries these days. To visit a Palmento is like stepping back in history and understanding how man and nature put it all together in the old days. Many of these old palmentos, are, thankfully being rediscovered and put into use all over Sicily. Some are even restoring the tradition of aging wines in amphora. We had the great fortune to visit one of the oldest ones perched on a hillside outside Sambuca and its elegance still resonates. It juts off a cliff with stunning views and you can only imagine the joy working there brought to its owners once upon a time.
Palmenti are generally circular or rectangular and are often located in repositories carved into ancient rock formations. This one arrives on your horizon just after leafy forest walk that makes you hungry for a glass of wine.