The New Wines of Mount Etna


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Stephanie Johnson,
Wine & Spirits Magazine


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The New Wines of Mount Etna | New York Times

“A fine textbook. In straightforward prose, Mr. Spencer traces the long history of making wine within the eruption zone of an active volcano … Excellent armchair traveling.” – Eric Asimov

The New Wines of Mount Etna | Best European Wine Book 2021

Best European Wine Book 2021
Gourmand Award

Etna Wine School |

“This book is a total joy. It is a travel guide (do not even think about heading to Sicily without a copy in your hand luggage); it is a get-to-know-you; it is a reference book; it is a love letter.” – Tamlyn Currin

The New Wines of Mount Etna | Benjamin North Spencer

Everything about Mount Etna arrives in small measures. Frequent changes in topography, elevation, sunlight, wind, and soils influence the color, aromas, and flavors of a wine, but every neighbor also has an idea of how best to interpret the grapes, terrain, and vintage. This is part of what makes these volcanic wines so exciting. They often escape the cross hairs of precise definition.

Thirty years ago this wasn’t the case. Vineyards growing on the slopes of the volcano Mount Etna were nearly abandoned. Now there are more than one hundred estates making some of the finest wines in the world.

This kind of rapid change doesn’t come easy. In The New Wines of Mount Etna, An Insider’s Guide to the History and Rebirth of a Wine Region, American wine expert Benjamin Spencer explores the practices, history, and joys of making wine on Europe’s largest active volcano, with a foreword from Susan Hulme MW.

Published by Gemelli Press

Benjamin Spencer is an American journalist, author, wine judge, and the founder of the Etna Wine School. He holds a Diploma of Wines and Spirits from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust and a writing degree from The Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University. He lives in Sicily.

Susan Hulme was awarded the title of Master of Wine in 2005. She teaches wine courses for the public and trade, including the WSET. She also judges for the International Wine & Spirit Competition and is a regular contributor to Decanter Magazine. Susan wrote the forward for The New Wines of Mount Etna.

Gemelli Press is a boutique independent publishing company based out of Seattle, Washington and Mount Airy, North Carolina. The company has twin passions for both books and Italy.  Gemelli Press was founded in 2007 and continues to publish high quality memoirs, works of fiction, cookbooks, children’s books and travel guides.  Books can be found  and ordered through any local independent bookstore, and online.

What People Are Saying

The New Wines of Mount Etna was published in 2020.
These are some of the comments we’ve collected from colleagues and critics.

"The New Wines of Mount Etna is by far the most compelling book written to date on the Etna wine region. Ben Spencer has done an incredible amount of research and now his wealth of knowledge is accessible to everyone. This book is a must read."
Antonio Benanti
President of the Consorzio per la Tutela dei Vini Dell`Etna
"The New Wines of Mount Etna captures how Etna has become one of the wine world’s most sought after and important wine regions. The antiquity of Etna’s heroic vines and stories of rediscovery are depicted beautifully."
Shelley Lindgren
Owner & Wine Director A16 & SPQR
"The New Wines of Mount Etna is a much needed resource for wine lovers and professionals about one of the most dynamic and complex wine regions of the past and present, Mount Etna. I highly recommend this book for anyone looking to delve deeper into their Italian and volcanic wine education."
Brittany Carlisi
Italian Wine Specialist & Educator
"As an outsider ex-pat turned expert insider, [Ben Spencer] portrays Etna with passion, sincerity and a resolution like no other before him. This book is highly recommended for those who love Etna wines and anyone who wants first-hand knowledge about this profound and mysterious wine region."
Arto Koskelo
Author & Jedi-Level Wine Drinker
The New Wines of Mount Etna is one of the best wines books I have read. Ben has done the near-impossible: provide deep knowledge & make it fun. Bravo!”
Jeff Porter
Sommelier & Host of 'Sip Trip'
"Spencer’s book is stuffed with important details, and what to expect when you visit wineries in the Etna DOC. The New Wines of Etna  is your recommended handbook.”
Susan Gordon
VIA Italian Wine Ambassador
“No region is hotter or more dynamic right now than Mount Etna. And I know from personal experience, nobody’s a better guide to the region than Benjamin North Spencer. The New Wines of Mount Etna is accurate, honest, comprehensive, and a great read.”
Fred Swan
Writer & Sommelier
“If you are even a little interested in Mount Etna wines, you’re sure to love this book. You’ll explore every nook, learn about every winery, and understand the dynamic evolution in progress on this breathtaking landscape.”
Jeff Burrows
The New Wines of Mount Etna | Benjamin North Spencer

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