Barberry Garden

A wine corner in a crazy world


Bombolieri BB - 2017

Arianna Occhipinti

4.40 / 5.0

red still, dry
IGP Terre Siciliane, Italy
2989 UAH, 1510 UAH
not available
Arianna Occhipinti Bombolieri BB 2017

It is not permitted to place contrada (district) names on Sicilian wine labels, so Arianna figured a clever way around the rules. Each contrada is represented by a two-letter abbreviation cheekily struck through with a line to emphasize their illicitness. SM stands for Santa Margherita, BB - for Bomboliere, PT - for Pettineo and FL - for Fossa di Lupo.

Bombolieri (BB) is adjacent to the winery and the last of the three Frappato parcels to be harvested. It consists of a few rows of 40-year-old, bush-trained (aka albarello) vines on a scant 25 centimetres of sandy white topsoil over pure limestone rock with almost no clay. The limestone holds water, slows down ripening and contributes a firm acidity and structure. Arianna finds it to be the most austere of the trio.

Arianna Occhipinti's Frappato BB is a red wine of great substance: juicy, sour and sanguine, an extraordinarily lively drink. Expression of the frappato in the Bombolieri district, the most structured between sharp acidity and dense tannic texture.

– Tripple A

Destemming, maceration on the skins and spontaneous fermentation in 85 hl concrete vats for 25 days with daily pumping over and punching down. Racking and ageing in the same containers for 6 months and in Austrian oak barrels for 12 months.


4.30 / 5.0750 ml@Wix Kyiv Office · On the road between two winds: Arianna Occhipinti

More than two years passed since the last time I tasted BB '17. And I remember it as a demanding, even challenging and electric wine. Today it still has this dangerous character, but it also become more interesting and multilayered.

And I adore how knocking and charming it is, all at the same time. The glass wafts with notes of blood sausage, salami, dried herbs, black pepper, limestone, VA and leather. On the palate, BB '17 offers high acidity and dry tannin. The oak influence here is delicate. And the aftertaste is long and flavourful - dry earth, raspberry and dried herbs with a bloody (aka metallic) finish.

Wine #5 on On the road between two winds: Arianna Occhipinti event.

4.50 / 5.0750 ml

Wine that evolves in the glass over the evening. Light pomegranate colour, aroma of blood sausage, cranberry and cherry. In 10 minutes you can also hear fresh leather. In 20 minutes - sweet cherry. And all of that on the bloody background. Medium-light body, fresh, tannic, well balanced with long and evolving aftertaste. Flavours of raw red meat, cranberry and sour cherry. Excellent wine, but it's still so young.

Arianna Occhipinti

Arianna Occhipinti is a winemaker from Vittoria who founded her own winery in 2004, bottled her first commercial vintage in 2006 and today works exclusively with estate fruit. She embraced winemaking thanks to her uncle, Guisto Occhipinti, proprietor of Vittoria's most famous winery, COS. At the age of 16 years, Arianna started to help him in the cellars. She loved this experience so much that her future connected to wine tightly.

After graduating from oenology school, Arianna started with only 1 hectare of abandoned vines attached to a family vacation house. Over the years, she acquired 25 hectares featuring only autochthonous varieties - 50% Frappato, 35% Nero d'Avola and 15% white varieties Albanello and Zibibbo. Almost all vines are young because Arianna planted them on her own. But she also added to her holdings 60 years old albarello-trained vines, which she initially rented.

Not irrigating, harvesting late and not using fertilizers are the secret to making more elegant wines in the area. The freshness and minerality in my wines come from the subsoils. Any wine made from young vines or chemically grown vines feeding only off of the top soil will have the cooked, hot characteristics people associate with wine from warm regions.

These days Arianna Occhipinti is famous as a biodynamic winemaker. There is zero irrigation in her vineyards in this hot, windy climate! To protect the vines, she grows cover crops (like fava beans) and other plants between every other row. Arianna tries to minimize intervention in the winemaking process.

Arianna is regarded as a symbol of success in the world of Biodynamic Farming and Natural Wine Making. She has remained committed to those principles while evolving from her originally more dogmatic outlook. Below is her response to importer Jules Dressner's question about her feeling about the term "natural wine":

I make natural wine, but this is a term I'm beginning to be less and less comfortable with, because its implications are very complicated. I really want to stress that my main goal is to make a good wine that reflects where it comes from, and for me the only way to successfully do this is to make the wine naturally. When I first started, people were just starting to talk about natural wine. It was very important to me to think about all these issues, and in those early years I definitely had a more militant attitude about it. Making natural wine was a mission, something worth fighting for. Now that I've grown up a little bit, the mission is making wine of terroir. You have to respect the vineyards, and nature in general. When I wake up in the morning, I want to feel free. Making this wine is my opportunity to feel free. So again, my goal is not to make natural wine, working this way is a process to make good wine.