ARIANNA OCCHIPINTI, VITTORIA
Biodynamic principles, natural, very limited availability
Arianna Occhipinti is the niece of Giusto Occhipinti of the legendary COS estate in Vittoria, south-eastern Sicily. Despite being relatively young, she is incredibly clear about her ethos and philosophy, which is to produce wines that express the unique territory of their native Iblein mountain vineyards. It is a windswept place with reddish, iron-rich soils and crabbed trees which hunch over low stone walls surrounding the vineyards.
Agricultural traditions here are millenia-old and the SP68 cuvees indeed allude to this fact. The Strada Provinciale 68 is but a continuation of a three thousand year old stone track which ancient farmers would have used to bring their own wines to the coastal trading towns of Lentini and Catania. “Never as in Bombolieri I can feel that I’m carrying with me past and future at the same time. It was the oldest wine route ever documented.”
All the vineyards are worked using biodynamic principles and the work in the cellar is measured…not pushing the wine in any way…letting it find its own space…..natural yeasts, no temperature control, no fining or filtration and minimal SO2 at bottling.
Il Frappato is grown on red sand with chalky subsoil at an altitude of 280 metres. The vines are average 40 years old. 30 days of skin maceration. Aged 14 months in 25hl Slovenian oak barrels, 1 month in bottle. Unfiltered.
“Il Frappato stems from a dream which I had when I was a girl to make a wine that knows the land that I work, the air I breath, and my own thoughts. It is bitter, bloody and elegant. That is Vittoria and the Iblei Mountains. It is the wine that most resembles me, brave, original and rebellious. But not only. It has peasant origins, for this it loves its roots and the past that it brings in; but, at the same time, it is able to fight to improve itself. It knows refinement without forgetting itself.” Arianna Occhipinti