Ciliegia dell'Etna DOP is an exceptional fruit from the province of Catania in Sicily, Southern Italy. The trees can be found from sea level up to 1.600 m along the slopes of Etna, the island's volcano.
Cherry trees are platens in the terre scatinate, the lands resulting from tillage of lava. Due to the extreme lack of water in the area, only a wild cherry variety fit for poor grounds is allowed to be planted.
The distribution of trees on different height levels provides for a very long pickup season for Ciliegia dell'Etna DOP. It is done exclusively by hand and happens between the beginning of June and the end of July.
The special ground, closeness to the sea and warm Southern Italy weather contribute to have a very peculiar fruit. Ciliegia dell'Etna DOP is shiny red, heart shaped and very large. It is crunchy and very sweet, but not sticky. It is rich in A and C vitamins, calcium, iron, potassium, and elects which protect the heart and slow aging.
Cherries are mainly enjoyed fresh, but they are also the basic ingredient of jam, cakes and spirits.