Vino della settimana – 2009 Il Frappato from Arianna Occhipinti

Arianna Occhipinti, sometimes referred to as the best worst-kept secret in the Italian wine world, is visiting Norway this week.  With a wine tasting (alongside her uncle, Giusto, with his own set of wines) last night, where she presented the following wines:  SP 68 Bianco 10, SP68 Nero d’Avola e Frappato 10, Il Frappato 09, Siccagno 08, Grotte Alte Cerasuolo di Vittoria Clasico DOCG 06, and the Pasonero Nero d’Avola Dolce 08.

Unfortunately we could not attend, so we went for the second best, we bought the 09 Il Frappato, and had it for dinner in honor of the visiting winemakers from Sicily.

2009 Il Frappato, by Arianna Occhipinti

In short, the Il Frappato is an intriguing wine.  To me, it’s different than any other wine I’ve had, but at the same time very familiar.  At times, there’s something very red burgundesq about it, and then it reminds you of a mature nebbiolo.  Still some sulphur notes on the notes, but when you get past that, there’s an abundance of warm red berries, earthy, and spicy aromas. Then strawberry cake.  Yes, strawberry cake – I have never had strawberry cake, but I guess that’s what it would have smelled like if I did. Fresh, very fresh.  Almost like summer, outdoors. Most of all it’s very precise, and I cannot help thinking that there’s something very pure about it. And, did I mention long?  It kinda goes on forever.  And, every sip is different, begging you to lift the glass once more.  I know fresh and mature does not really go together in the same wine, but somehow this wine manages to do exactly that. Not sure how long this wine will last, but we’ll keep some bottles in the cellar and taste them over the next couple of years.

Arianna Occhipinti

This photo taken from Occhipinti’s Facebook page

Almost always comparing whatever we taste to the wines of Piemonte and/or Burgundy, the Il Frappato is what the Cavallotto brothers would have made if they did a red Pinot Noir.  In fact, what if Arianna married one of the Cavallotto brothers? They would have made a formidable winemaking couple.  Maybe that’s an idea?  They share the passion, the love of the land, and connection to their roots.  And both make interesting and great wines.

Anyways, a slam dunk for our “Wine of the week”!

This is the second time around a wine from this winemaker has received this “honor”.  The SP68 was HTWT’s Wine of the Week back in June.

Want to know more about Occhipinti, read this interview here

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