Donnafugata Ben Ryé Sweet wine from Sicily

Back in the Autumn I was invited to a lovely lunch at the Modern Pantry in Clerkenwell to meet the elegant José Rallo of Donnafugata wines in Siciliy. We tasted six wines from the portfolio, pairing each with a different course.

These are wines of character and there is no one better to present them than José. If you watch the video below you can see that we were serenaded as we tasted. Keeping in mind that José has sung jazz at the Blue Note Jazz Club in New York, it is not surprising that over a long lunch one could easily suspect that these wines compose their own siren songs and play them to the senses.

Wine for generations to come

 

I have included a few photographs from the lunch to give an impression but do look out for them and try them for yourself. An additional factor worth considering is that Donnafugata work with sustainable practices in production, regarding this as a central tenet of winemaking. This is move towards more natural organic processes is not just fad to sell wines, it is a promotion of life in the vineyard and a healthier way of living. The life in the soils where vines grow add resilience to the wine and that goodness is passed on to the drinker. Add to this, that in a world where humans are having an increasing impact on the natural world, a move to sustainability should be a major part of our legacy to the young of today.

  • Dining room at the Modern Pantry, Clerkenwell, London

    Dining room at the Modern Pantry, Clerkenwell, London

  • Pairing with rich tasty foods at The Modern Pantry

    Pairing with rich tasty foods at The Modern Pantry

  • Donnafugata: Let's taste it!

    Donnafugata: Let's taste it!

  • José Rallo

    José Rallo

  • SurSur Donnafugata - fresh, fruity aperitif or partner for white crab salad?

    SurSur Donnafugata - fresh, fruity aperitif or partner for white crab salad?

  • Chatting, Tasting and Dining

    Chatting, Tasting and Dining

  • Vigna di Gabri - succulent and rich

    Vigna di Gabri - succulent and rich

  • Tancredi, 2011, Donnafugata, Sicily

    Tancredi, 2011, Donnafugata, Sicily

  • Ben Ryé - sweet dessert Wine to die for!

    Ben Ryé - sweet dessert Wine to die for!

    Donnafugata spotted in local Oddbins, West Dulwich

    I was scanning the shelves in my local Oddbins store in West Dulwich and was pleasantly surprised to see a bottle of Sedåra DOC Rosso, Donnafugata. I snapped a bottle up for around £10 and, when poured, like a seashell held closely to the ear, if you are quiet you can hear the flute like voice of José compelling you to enjoy life a little more!

    sedara doc rosso

    Ben Ryé - delicious sweet wine you have to try

    Sweet wines are too much overlooked and yet can offer some of the best sensations for tasters. This  Ben Ryé from Donnafugata is absolutely to die for and would make a truly splendid treat for Christmas. Rich in colour, lovely orange peel aromas and the succulent sweetness of dried fruits, nuts and much more - just let yourself drift. It’s about £36 per 37.5ml bottle from Old Bridge Wine.

    06 ben ryeben rye sweet dessert

    Take us all to Sicily!

    I am hoping that I get to visit the winery and taste the full range of wines from Donnafugata at source. If anyone else does, or has, then please send me your impressions and tasting notes. We’ll happily publish. As a small mercy, I spotted on Twitter this morning that the winery is giving away a free downloadable Ebook with Sicilian recipes and wine pairings [Download here]. Well, I am afraid it is another case of close your eyes allow your senses to transport you.

    Happy dreaming and Happy Christmas!