Donnafugata Ben Ryè Passito di Pantelleri Dop 2009
Harvesting takes place in 11 different areas with a variety of ripening times. After 15th August, the harvest begins by picking the grapes destined to dry naturally in the sun and the wind for 20-30 days. In September, the less mature vineyards are harvested. During fermentation, the dried grapes are de-stemmed by hand, and added to the fresh must in several batches. During maceration, the dried grapes release their extraordinary qualities of persuasive sweetness, freshness and a special aroma. The wine then ages in stainless steel vats for at least 7 months, followed by 12 months in bottles.
Also made from Zibbibo, but those that are destined to dry naturally in the sun and that made it through three selections! The name is derived from Bent El Riah, the Arabic name for the island of Pantelleria. Although they say that it means 'Son of the Wind', on the Wikipedia page for Pantelleria, it means Daughter of the Wind. Bent in Arabic definitely means Daughter so perhaps Donnafugata needs to tweak their description a little. Or perhaps Ben Rye in italian means Son of the wind? I doubt it though. This dessert wine after triple selection is very smooth like one is having silky Mangosteens. The aroma even reminds me of mangosteen (how I miss the fruit!) and of raisins and apricot. It tasted of sweet plums, figs and honey with hints of toastiness (drying in the sun). Picked from the oldest vines, Ben Rye will be a great dessert! For more on the tasting, please visit http://dionyshius.blogspot.com/2012/06/donnafugata.html