The Rallo family has made wine in Marsala on the island of Sicily since 1851, its ancient cellars tunnelling deep beneath the city.
However, it wasn’t until 1983 that Giacomo Rallo established Donnafugata, which translates as ‘fleeing woman’ and is a reference to Queen Maria Carolina, who escaped the court of Naples in the early 19th century with her husband, Ferdinand IV of Bourbon, when Napoleon’s troops arrived, the couple ultimately taking refuge in Sicily.
Six years after its birth, this iconic producer planted its first vines on Pantelleria – an island which sits closer to Africa than Sicily – and it is this secluded, wind-swept spot that is the origin of Donnafugata’s masterpiece Ben Ryé.
Ben Ryé is cultivated from low bush vines bordered by lava stone walls. It is made by infusing a dry base wine with grapes which have been left to wither under the sun for up to one month. The result is of the world’s most revered sweet wines.
We are delighted to be able to taste a vertical of this magical nectar with Gabriele Gorelli MW, alongside José Rallo, owner and CEO of Donnafugata.
We hope you join us for an evening of unforgettable wine…
The wines we will be tasting:
2020 Donnafugata, Ben Ryé, Passito di Pantelleria
2017 Donnafugata, Ben Ryé, Passito di Pantelleria
2015 Donnafugata, Ben Ryé, Passito di Pantelleria
2013 Donnafugata, Ben Ryé, Passito di Pantelleria
2011 Donnafugata, Ben Ryé, Passito di Pantelleria
2006 Donnafugata, Ben Ryé, Passito di Pantelleria
Wednesday 9th November
St. James’s Room
18:30 – Glass on arrival
19:00 – Masterclass begins
20:30 – Masterclass ends
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