Located in Sicily ’s south-eastern Val di Noto province, the Occhipinti family is synonymous with the Frappato grape that underpins Siciliy’s only DOCG: Cerasuolo di Vittoria. Arianna kicked off in 2004, making wines in a family farmhouse, before transferring, in 2013, to a purpose-built winery, where her 22 hectares of Frappato and Nero d’Avola, along with one-and-a-half hectares of intense Albanello and Zibibbo white grapes, are vinified using cement and Stockinger barrels (Slavonian, German, Austrian oak).

Tasting Notes

Grape Variety 50% Frappato, 50% Nero d’Avola

Occhipinti Grotte Alte is fermented with native yeasts and macerated with the skins for some 30 days. Once the wine is fermented it undergoes a refining ageing in 25 hl Slavonian oak barrels for a period of 32 to 48 months. It is bottled unfiltered to preserve the structure of the wine.

Among the best and most subtle expressions of Cerasuolo di Vittoria, Grotte Alte is not by chance among the few to boast the maximum allowed by the Frappato disciplinary. Dark ruby red, the nose consequently expresses more subtlety and grace than fruit and sweetness, with a Mediterranean and deep outfit. The spicy, herbaceous, vegetable scents accompany the fruity notes, and are counterpointed by marine puffs, myrtle, earth, licorice, tobacco. In the mouth it is of extraordinary elegance, dynamic and taut, enveloping but fine and precise.

“A bit shier than the vini di contrada in this phase, anise, sandalwood and a Burgundian whiff of animal musk superimposed over earthy red cherries and red roses. Layered but youthfully tight, blood orange and savoury minerals take centre stage, followed by pinpoint tannins and a touch of stemmy herbal freshness, while a kiss of oak spice frames the long and racy finish.” DECANTER -94 POINTS