Friday, April 12, 2024

“A truly remarkable glass of white”. Occhipinti SP68 Bianco Terre Siciliane.

Occhipinti SP68 Bianco Terre Siciliane (IGT) 2022 11.0% ABV

RRP €29.95. Stockists: 64 Wine Dublin, Bradley’s of Cork, Greenman Dublin, Le Caveau

A truly remarkable glass of white”


The colour is a deeper shade of gold than you might expect. This organic wine has spent 155 days maceration on the skins. The aromas are also quite complex, white flowers, moderate tropical fruit (think lychee, mango) and a mild spice. 

Strongly aromatic, yet this blend of two little-known Sicilian varieties, 60% Zibibbo (a regional name for Muscat of Alexandria) and Albanella, is surprisingly light on its feet as it dances across the palate, unveiling layer after layer of flavour as you sip, and meditate, to a very satisfactory finish indeed. 

It is packed with vivacious character, a drink to remember. As Le Caveau say: “A truly remarkable glass of white”. Full of juice, joy and vitality, this stellar wine is one to savour. Very Highly Recommended.

Arianna Occhipinti, the winemaker, learned the ropes as a 16-year-old from her uncle Giusto Occhipinti who is well-known for his use of Spanish amphorae at COS, a winery he founded in the area with two friends in 1980. 

Arianna has been learning well before and since launching her own winery in 2006. She has a big interest in reviving forgotten Sicilian grapes and is indeed credited by the recently published VINO with bringing Frappato back to life “almost single-handedly” and has become a “rock star in the world of natural wine.”

All the vineyards are worked using biodynamic principals 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.

The SP68 is the name of the main road that passes near to Arianna’s home town of Vittoria….it lies in the far south of Sicily just to the west of Ragusa. She also produces a red SP68 and you may read a recent review of it here


Her vines are grown organically, under the clear Iblean sky, with no chemical intervention. The farming system is Guyot and spurred cordon and the average age of the plants is 15 years. Harvest time is late September into early October.

Vines (via Occhipinti)

In the winery, fermentation is with indigenous yeast and it spends 155 days of maceration on the skins, then 6 months in concrete tanks, plus 1 month in bottle, and there is no filtration.


No comments: