Donnafugata has completed the harvest on Pantelleria and at Contessa Entellina. Ripening as in the typical Sicilian vintages but at a faster pace in the final week of August. The wines will have good bodies with excellent aromatic finesse and pronounced elegance in the full Donnafugata style.
Temperatures registered were close to seasonal levels. The highest was registered in June from the 23rd to the 26th. However, the heat was mitigated by extremely low temperatures at night (see Table 1).
Table 1 – Data collected by Agriveltha telemetric devices on the Donnafugata Estate at Contessa Entellina.
|37.0° C / 98.6 °F
|38.9° C / 102 °F
|39.9° C/103.8 °F
|38.2° C / 100.8 °F
|17.8° C / 64 °F
|16.5° C / 61.7 °F
|15.1° C / 59.2 °F
|16.3° C / 61.3 °F
|19.2° C / 66.6 °F
|22.4° C / 72.3 °F
|24.8° C / 76.6 °F
|21.1° C / 70 °F
Also in July, maximum temperatures like those registered between the 20th and the 24th were offset by minimum temperatures that were decidedly low. Between the 22nd and 29th of August, maximum temperatures were higher than 36° C. The hottest day, partly the result of the sirocco, was the 24th but even in this period there were big variations in temperatures (see Table 2).
Table 2 – Data collected by Agriveltha telemetric devices on the Donnafugata Estate at Contessa Entellina.
|40.2 °C/ 104.4°F
|38.9 °C/ 102°F
|40.1 °C/ 104.2°F
|38.1 °C/ 100.6°F
|18.0 °C/ 64.4°F
|17.9 °C/ 64.2°F
|16.2 °C/ 61.2°F
|13.9 °C/ 57°F
|21.8 °C/ 71.2°F
|21.0 °C/ 69.8°F
|23.9 °C/ 75°F
|24.2 °C/ 75.6°F
These strong variations between day and night temperatures were essential to the proper performance of the vegetative cycle in the vineyards and for the organoleptic quality of the grapes.
Ripening and harvesting: The beginning of the vintage was in line with the average startup of harvesting on Sicily. It began with Chardonnay on August 17 and the pickers then moved on to the Viognier. During the heat wave of the last week of August, ripening accelerated and in response the harvesters started to bring in the Merlot on August 24, the Syrah on September 2, the Nero d’Avola on the 4th and the Cabernet Sauvignon on the 6th, while the harvesting of the Ansonica began on the 7th, followed by the Catarratto. Harvesting concluded on September 23 with the last red grapes.
Quantity – The productivity of the vineyards from the end of the flowering appeared inferior to the average of recent vintages. Still, to realize its qualitative objectives, the estate carried out relatively little thinning. Quality – Altogether, the grapes reached a state of perfect sugary ripeness. In addition, the aromatic and phenolic ripeness was excellent thanks to the substantial variations in temperatures registered in the countryside around Contessa Entellina and to the use of emergency irrigation.
Temperatures were recorded at the usual seasonal values with maximum points registered at the end of June, the second half of July and in the final week of August as in other parts of Sicily. Except in the days when the sirocco was blowing, variations between day and night temperatures had positive effects on the performance of the cycle of vegetation in the vineyards and on the sensory quality of the grapes.
Ripening and harvesting: The maturation of the Zibibbo grapes began with a delay of a few days in comparison with the typical Pantelleria vintage. Harvesting began on August 17 in the most precocious areas on the island: Martingana, Punta Karace and Cala Levante. It was, first of all, a selective harvest, in which the ripest grapes were collected and they were the first set aside for drying. The initial, minor delay in ripening was rectified by a week of higher temperatures, registered between August 22 and 29. The harvest ended on September 15.
Final judgment: with the 2007 harvest the estate will be able to offer wines with good bodies, excellent aromatic finesse and pronounced elegance in the fullness of the Donnafugata style.
Baldo M. Palermo [email protected] phone +39 0923 724226
Laura Ellwanger: [email protected] phone. +39 0923 724258
Nando Calaciura [email protected] mob. +39 338 3229837