Based in Marsala in southwestern Sicily, the highly respected vineyard Donnafugata established a winery on Pantelleria in 1989 with the intention of maintaining the island’s ancient wine-producing traditions. It specializes in quality wines from the Zibibbo grape — also known as Muscat of Alexandria — which is the island’s most characteristic variety.
The 168 acres of vines include parcels all over the island and are cultivated by hand, as the grapes grow on terraces or in tiny fields. The best of Donnafugata’s Pantellerian wines is the sweet, amber-colored Ben Ryè, a Passito di Pantelleria DOP, produced with Zibibbo grapes that have been dried to concentrate their sugar and aromas. Elegant and complex, it is a superbly contemplative wine.
Other fine Pantellerian wines from Donnafugata include Kabir, a lighter Moscato di Pantelleria, a good dessert wine; and Lighea, a white table wine made from Zibibbo grapes that is deliciously crisp and well-structured.
Visits are by appointment only. Contrada Khamma Fuori 6. Tel. (39) 3356-242-563.