Silvio Carta Vernaccia di Oristano 2005

The Carta family has been making (and storing) wine in the sleepy coastal town of Oristano for generations. The local grape is Vernaccia (though not the one from Gimignano). The vine was possibly introduced by the Phoenicians or it was cultivated from wild vines of the Tirso valley. The style is "oxidative", but no Englishman created or discovered this wine (as happened in Marsala). And maybe that's a shame, because these wines deserve to be better known outside their home. The wine is vinified dry, and the nose is chalky and intriguing. Multiple aged vintages are available. The register is something new for us, falling somewhere amid the mineral tones of Fino, the nuttiness of Marsala, and a bit of passito fruit.