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Donnafugata Ben Rye (375ML half-bottle) 2008

Other Dessert from Sicily, Italy
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    14.13% ABV
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      14.13% ABV

      Winemaker Notes

      The "Son of the Wind" remains true to itself in the 2008 vintage, revealing the extraordinary complexity it has reached in recent years. Regular weather conditions and fine vineyard tending led to an optimal grape harvest.

      Complex and ample sweet wine with an outstanding freshness. On the nose intense notes of apricot and peach follewed by sweet sensations of dried figs and honey, aromatic herbs and mineral notes.

      Its fragrant sweetness makes it a perfect partner for blue cheeses and fois gras. We also recommend it with ricotta-filled desserts or gianduia chocolate.

      Critical Acclaim

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      WE 95
      Wine Enthusiast
      Ben Ryé is always a fabulous dessert wine from Pantelleria (an island off the coast of Sicily) and this expression shows beautiful liveliness and personality. You’ll get aromas of stone fruit, apricot, honey, almond paste and even a spicy touch of fresh ginger. It feels smooth, rich and totally decadent.
      WS 93
      Wine Spectator
      An intense sweetie, boasting concentrated peach compote, orange marmalade and golden raisin flavors backed by bright acidity, as spice, butterscotch and candied orange peel notes lead to a fruit-filled finish. Zibibbo. Drink now through 2020. 500 cases imported.
      RP 90
      Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
      The 2008 Passito di Pantelleria Ben Rye flows with the essence of burnt sugar, candied orange peel, dried figs and sweet spices. There is a wonderful salinity that frames the fruit beautifully to the long, creamy finish. Ben Rye is made from air-dried Zibibbo grown on Pantelleria, an island located off the Western coast of Sicily. It is a fairly rich, weighty dessert wine that is probably best enjoyed on its own. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2018.
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      Donnafugata

      Donnafugata

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      Donnafugata, Sicily, Italy
      Image of winery
      In the Italian language, Donnafugata means "fleeing woman". The story goes that in the late 19th century the Queen Maria Carolina after her flight from the court of Naples took refuge in the heart of Belice Valley in Sicily. This event inspired the image of the head of a woman, her hair tossed about by the wind and the Estate name.

      Donnafugata grew out of the commitment of a family in Sicily that has always believed in the extraordinary enological potential of its land and has 150 years of experience in producing premium wines. Convinced that it is always necessary to be open to change in order to grow and improve, Giacomo Rallo and his wife, Gabriella, launched a new production project in 1983: Donnafugata. Their adventure took wing from the family’s historic cellars in Marsala and the vineyards at Contessa Entellina in the heart of western Sicily and soared as far as the island of Pantelleria.

      Their children, José and Antonio, joined them and the house accelerated its march along the path of Extreme Quality: a project that focused on attention to detail, which clears the way for entrepreneurial decisions that ever more advanced objectives. As for the future, the young Gabriella and Ferdinando are already being "fully immersed" in the family’s activities.

      A large, geographically and climatically diverse island off the toe of Italy, Sicily has long been recognized for its fortified Marsala wines. It is also home to red and white table wines that have been steadily increasing in quality and popularity over the past few decades, allowing Italy’s fourth largest wine-producing region to shed its former image as merely a supplier of bulk wine. Certainly, plenty of bulk wine is still made here, but those who look beyond that will find plenty of high-quality wines for every-day drinking as well as bottles from boutique producers who espouse thoughtful vineyard practices (the organic wine movement thrives here). Though most think of the climate here as simply hot and dry, there is some variation on the sun-drenched island, particularly at high elevation on the slopes of Mount Etna.

      Although Sicily’s comeback began with clever labels and easily recognizable international varieties, its charm lies in its indigenous grapes. Nero d’Avola is the most widely planted red variety, responsible for full-bodied, berry fruited wines throughout the island. In Cerasuolo di Vittoria, it is blended with the lighter, more floral Frappato to create an elegantly balanced wine. On the volcanic soils of Mount Etna, many noteworthy wines are being produced in every color—whites from Cataratto and Carricante, and rosés from Nerello Mascalese and Nerello Cappuccio. All of these wines share a racy streak of minerality and at their best can bear more than a slight resemblance to their respective Burgundies. Grillo and Inzolia, the grapes of Marsala, are used to produce generally simple, crisp dry whites. Pantelleria, a subtropical island belonging to the province of Sicily, specializes in Moscato di Pantelleria, made from the variety locally known as Zibibbo.

      Other Dessert

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      Apart from the classics, we find many regional gems of different styles.

      Late harvest wines are probably the easiest to understand. Grapes are picked so late that the sugars build up and residual sugar remains after the fermentation process. Ice wine, a style founded in Germany and there referred to as eiswein, is an extreme late harvest wine, produced from grapes frozen on the vine, and pressed while still frozen, resulting in a higher concentration of sugar. It is becoming a specialty of Canada as well, where it takes on the English name of ice wine.

      Vin Santo, literally “holy wine,” is a Tuscan sweet wine made from drying the local white grapes Trebbiano Toscano and Malvasia in the winery and not pressing until somewhere between November and March.

      Rutherglen is an historic wine region in northeast Victoria, Australia, famous for its fortified Topaque and Muscat with complex tawny characteristics.

      HOR028230_2008 Item# 111026