Donnafugata Ben Ryé

Passito di Pantelleria DOC, Sicilia

DIALOGUE WITH ART: from the Arabic term "Son of the Wind" because the wind sweeps constantly around the grape clusters on Pantelleria. And the island's winds bring with them a profusion of fragrances so powerful that you can touch them. An author label telling the love, the care and the effort

Tasting Notes

Ben Ryé 2021 has a golden color with bright amber hues. The very intense bouquet ranges from fruity notes of apricot, yellow peach and candied orange peel to tropical hints of mango and papaya, followed by hints of Mediterranean scrub. On the palate, the fruity hints of aromatic herbs are combined with sweet nuances of honey. Intense and persistent, with an extraordinary balance between freshness and sweetness, Ben Ryè is a captivating Passito di Pantelleria, among wines most popular desserts in the world.

Perfect with dry pastries, chocolate and jam or ricotta tarts. Try also with blue cheese and foie gras. Extraordinary on its own, as a meditation wine. Serve it in tulip-shaped goblets of medium size, slightly bellied; uncork at time of serving; excellent at 14° C (57° F).

In Pantelleria, wthe 2021 vintage was slightly less rainy, recording 342 mm of precipitation compared to the average of 449 mm*. The weather conditions, free from bad climatic events in the flowering and fruit-setting stage, established the premises for a very good production. The warm August had an impact on the quantity of grapes produced, which was lower than average. The quality of the grapes, carefully selected and brought to the winery, was very high.

* The rainfall data are calculated from 1 October to 30 September of the following year;
**the average is calculated starting from the 2013 harvest

Manual harvesting of grapes into crates with careful selection of the grapes in the vineyard. The Zibibbo harvest at Donnafugata traditionally continues for 3-4 weeks, in the districts where the company has its vineyards that differ in altitude, exposure, proximity to or distance from the sea; the harvest began on 16th of August and concluded on 8th of September.

Once the grapes reach the winery, they undergo further selection on a vibrating table before soft pressing. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel at controlled temperatures; the dried grapes – added to the fresh must in several batches – are destemmed and selected by hand. During maceration, the dried grapes release their extraordinary legacy of sweetness, freshness, and a very personal aroma. The vinification process (fermentation and maceration) lasts over 1 month. Aging takes place in stainless steel for 5 months and at least 8 months in bottle before being released.

PRODUCTION AREA: island of Pantelleria (South-Western Sicily); districts of Khamma, Tracino, Mueggen, Serraglia, Gibbiuna, Barone, Martingana, Bukkuram, Favarotta, Punta Karace, Bugeber, Karuscia.
TERRAINS & CLIMATE: altitude from 20 to 400 m a.m.s.l. (65-1,312 ft); complex orography, typically volcanic, soils mainly cultivated on terraced slopes; sandy soils, originating from lava, that vary between sub-acidic and neutral reaction; deep, fertile soils, well-endowed with minerals. Mild, dry winters. Windy summers.
VINEYARD: the vines are cultivated, in hollows, low alberello pantesco. The low bush vine of Pantelleria has been inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as a “creative and sustainable” practice. Planting density of 2,500 plants per hectare (1,000 an acre) with a yield of about 4–5 tons per hectare (1,6-2 tons an acre). The average age of the vines is over 60 years; some are ungrafted and survived phylloxera exceeding 100 years in age.

Denomination: Passito di Pantelleria DOC
Grapes: Zibibbo (Muscat of Alexandria)
Alcohol: 14.4% ABV
Total acidity: 7.2 g/l
pH: 3.78
Sugar content: 197 g/l

DIALOGUE WITH ART: from the Arabic term "Son of the Wind" because the wind sweeps constantly around the grape clusters on Pantelleria. And the island's winds bring with them a profusion of fragrances so powerful that you can touch them. An author label telling the love, the care and the effort

Tasting Notes

Ben Ryé 2020 has a golden color with bright amber hues. The very intense bouquet ranges from fruity notes of apricot and candied orange peel, to hints of Mediterranean scrub. On the palate the fruity hints of aromatic herbs are combined with sweet nuances of honey. Intense and persistent, with an extraordinary balance between freshness and sweetness, Ben Ryè is a captivating Passito di Pantelleria, among wines most popular desserts in the world.

Perfect with dry pastries, chocolate and jam or ricotta tarts. Try also with blue cheese and foie gras. Extraordinary on its own, as a meditation wine. Serve it in tulip-shaped goblets of medium size, slightly bellied; uncork at time of serving; excellent at 14° C (57° F).

In Pantelleria, where Donnafugata cultivates 68 hectares of vineyards located in 14 different districts, the 2020 vintage was slightly less rainier, recording 433 mm of precipitation compared to the average of 462 mm*. The quantity of Zibibbo produced is in line with average of production of Donnafugata in Sicily. The wines of the 2020 vintage stand out for their aromatic intensity and excellent freshness.

* The rainfall data are calculated from 1 October to 30 September of the following year;
**the average is calculated starting from the 2013 harvest

Manual harvesting of grapes into crates with careful selection of the grapes in the vineyard. The Zibibbo harvest at Donnafugata traditionally continues for about 4 weeks, in the districts where the company has its vineyards that differ in altitude, exposure, proximity to or distance from the sea; the harvest began on 17th of August and concluded on 9th of September.

Once the grapes reach the winery, they undergo further selection on a vibrating table before soft pressing. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel at controlled temperatures; the dried grapes – added to the fresh must in several batches – are destemmed and selected by hand. During maceration, the dried grapes release their extraordinary legacy of sweetness, freshness, and a very personal aroma. The vinification process (fermentation and maceration) lasts over 1 month. Aging takes place in stainless steel for 8 months and at least 12 months in bottle before being released to the market.

PRODUCTION AREA: island of Pantelleria (South-Western Sicily); districts of Khamma, Tracino, Mueggen, Serraglia, Gibbiuna, Barone, Martingana, Bukkuram, Favarotta, Punta Karace, Bugeber, Karuscia.
TERRAINS & CLIMATE: altitude from 20 to 400 m a.m.s.l. (65-1,312 ft); complex orography, typically volcanic, soils mainly cultivated on terraced slopes; sandy soils, originating from lava, that vary between sub-acidic and neutral reaction; deep, fertile soils, well-endowed with minerals. Mild, dry winters. Windy summers.
VINEYARD: the vines are cultivated, in hollows, low alberello pantesco. The low bush vine of Pantelleria has been inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as a “creative and sustainable” practice. Planting density of 2,500 plants per hectare (1,000 an acre) with a yield of about 4–5 tons per hectare (1,6-2 tons an acre). The average age of the vines is about 60 years; some are ungrafted and survived phylloxera exceeding 100 years in age.

Denomination: Passito di Pantelleria DOC
Grapes: Zibibbo (Muscat of Alexandria)
Alcohol: 14.27% ABV
Total acidity: 7.5 g/l
pH: 3.88
Sugar content: 192 g/l

DIALOGUE WITH ART: from the Arabic term "Son of the Wind" because the wind sweeps constantly around the grape clusters on Pantelleria. And the island's winds bring with them a profusion of fragrances so powerful that you can touch them. An author label telling the love, the care and the effort

Tasting Notes

Ben Ryé 2019 has a golden color with bright amber hues. The very intense bouquet ranges from fruity notes of apricot and candied orange peel, to hints of Mediterranean scrub. On the palate the fruity hints of aromatic herbs are combined with sweet nuances of honey. Intense and persistent, with an extraordinary balance between freshness and sweetness, Ben Ryè is a captivating Passito di Pantelleria, among wines most popular desserts in the world.

Perfect with dry pastries, chocolate and jam or ricotta tarts. Try also with blue cheese and foie gras. Extraordinary on its own, as a meditation wine. Serve it in tulip-shaped goblets of medium size, slightly bellied; uncork at time of serving; excellent at 14° C (57° F).

In Pantelleria, where Donnafugata cultivates 68 hectares of vineyards located in 14 different districts, the 2019 vintage was slightly rainier, recording 505 mm of precipitation compared to the average of 466 mm*. The quantity of Zibibbo produced was lower than in the last two years. This result was influenced by the particularly cold and windy spring *The rainfall data for each vintage are calculated from 1 October to 30 September of the following year.

* The rainfall data are calculated from 1 October to 30 September of the following year;
**the average is calculated starting from the 2013 harvest

Manual harvesting of grapes into crates with careful selection of the grapes in the vineyard. The Zibibbo harvest at Donnafugata traditionally continues for about 4 weeks, in the districts where the company has its vineyards that differ in altitude, exposure, proximity to or distance from the sea; the harvest began on 17 August and concluded on 12 September.

Once the grapes reach the winery, they undergo further selection on a vibrating table before soft pressing. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel at controlled temperatures; the dried grapes – added to the fresh must in several batches – are de-stemmed and selected by hand. During maceration, the dried grapes release their extraordinary legacy of sweetness, freshness and a very personal aroma. The vinification process (fermentation and maceration) lasts over 1 month. Aging takes place in stainless steel for 8 months and at least 12 months in bottle before being released to the market.

PRODUCTION AREA: island of Pantelleria (South-Western Sicily); districts of Khamma, Tracino, Mueggen, Serraglia, Gibbiuna, Barone, Martingana, Bukkuram, Favarotta, Punta Karace, Bugeber, Karuscia.
TERRAINS & CLIMATE: altitude from 20 to 400 m a.m.s.l. (65-1,312 ft); complex orography, typically volcanic, soils mainly cultivated on terraced slopes; sandy soils, originating from lava, that vary between sub-acidic and neutral reaction; deep, fertile soils, well-endowed with minerals. Mild, dry winters. Windy summers.
VINEYARD: the vines are cultivated, in hollows, low alberello pantesco. The low bush vine of Pantelleria has been inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as a “creative and sustainable” practice. Planting density of 2,500 plants per hectare (1,000 an acre) with a yield of about 4–5 tons per hectare (1,6-2 tons an acre). The average age of the vines is about 60 years; some are ungrafted and survived phylloxera exceeding 100 years in age.

Denomination: Passito di Pantelleria DOC
Grapes: Zibibbo (Muscat of Alexandria)
Alcohol: 14.20% ABV
Total acidity: 7.3 g/l
pH: 3.85
Sugar content: 194 g/l

DIALOGUE WITH ART: from the Arabic term "Son of the Wind" because the wind sweeps constantly around the grape clusters on Pantelleria. And the island's winds bring with them a profusion of fragrances so powerful that you can touch them. An author label telling the love, the care and the effort

Tasting Notes

Ben Ryé 2018 offers an extraordinary rich bouquet with outstanding aromas obtained from the dried grapes: apricots and candied orange peel. It presents delicate hints of Mediterranean scrub (maquis). The palate is very fresh and intense, balancing perfectly the sweetness followed by a long and satisfying persistence.

Perfect with dry pastries, chocolate and jam or ricotta tarts. Try also with blue cheese and foie gras. Extraordinary on its own, as a meditation wine. Serve it in tulip-shaped goblets of medium size, slightly bellied; uncork at time of serving; excellent at 14° C (57° F).

After two rather dry vintages, 2018 was a vintage with more rainfall, with 591 mm* of rainfall compared to the average of 460 mm**. The quantity of grapes produced was slightly higher than the last two vintages; cluster thinning was performed in some vineyards to favor optimal ripening of grapes for the Moscato di Pantelleria.

*The rainfall data for each vintage are calculated from 1 October to 30 September of the following year;
**the average is calculated starting from the 2013 harvest.

Manual harvesting of grapes into crates with careful selection of the grapes in the vineyard. The Zibibbo harvest at Donnafugata traditionally continues for about 4 weeks, in the districts where the company has its vineyards that differ in altitude, exposure, proximity to or distance from the sea; the harvest began on 17 August and concluded on 6 September.

Once the grapes reach the winery, they undergo further selection on a vibrating table before soft pressing. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel at controlled temperatures; the dried grapes – added to the fresh must in several batches – are de-stemmed and selected by hand. During maceration, the dried grapes release their extraordinary legacy of sweetness, freshness and a very personal aroma. The vinification process (fermentation and maceration) lasts over 1 month. Aging takes place in stainless steel for 8 months and at least 12 months in bottle before being released to the market.

PRODUCTION AREA: Island of Pantelleria (South-Western Sicily); districts of Khamma, Tracino, Mueggen, Serraglia, Gibbiuna, Barone, Martingana, Bukkuram, Favarotta, Punta Karace, Bugeber, Karuscia.
TERRAINS & CLIMATE: altitude from 20 to 400 m a.m.s.l. (65-1,312 ft); complex orography, typically volcanic, soils mainly cultivated on terraced slopes; sandy soils, originating from lava, that vary between sub-acidic and neutral reaction; deep, fertile soils, well-endowed with minerals. Mild, dry winters. Windy summers.
VINEYARD: the vines are cultivated, in hollows, low alberello pantesco. The low bush vine of Pantelleria has been inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as a “creative and sustainable” practice. Planting density of 2,500 plants per hectare (1,000 an acre) with a yield of about 4–5 tons per hectare (1,6-2 tons an acre). The average age of the vines is about 60 years; some are ungrafted and survived phylloxera exceeding 100 years in age.

Denomination: Passito di Pantelleria DOC
Grapes: Zibibbo (Muscat of Alexandria)
Alcohol: 14.30% ABV
Total acidity: 7.2 g/l
pH: 3.82
Sugar content: 197 g/l

Ben Ryé 2017 offers an extraordinary rich bouquet with outstanding aromas of apricots and candied orange peel obtained from the dried grapes. The palate is very fresh and intense, balancing perfectly the sweetness with a long and satisfying persistence.

Extraordinary alone or pair with caramelized duck, foie gras and blue cheeses, pastries, chocolate and jam or ricotta tarts.

  • DENOMINATION: Passito di Pantelleria DOC.
  • GRAPES: Zibibbo (Muscat of Alexandria).
  • PRODUCTION AREA: island of Pantelleria (South-Western Sicily); districts of Khamma, Tracino, Mueggen, Serraglia, Gibbiuna, Barone, Martingana, Bukkuram, Favarotta, Punta Karace, Bugeber, Karuscia.
  • TERRAINS & CLIMATE: altitude from 20 to 400 m a.m.s.l. (65-1,312 ft); complex orography, typically volcanic, soils mainly cultivated on terraced slopes; sandy soils, originating from lava, that vary between sub-acidic and neutral reaction; deep, fertile soils, well-endowed with minerals. Mild, dry winters. Windy summers.
  • VINEYARD: the vines are cultivated, in hollows, low alberello pantesco. The low bush vine of Pantelleria has been inscribed on the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity as a “creative and sustainable” practice. Planting density of 2,500 plants per hectare (1,000 an acre) with a yield of about 4–5 tons per hectare (1,6-2 tons an acre). The average age of the vines is about 60 years; some are ungrafted and survived phylloxera exceeding 100 years in age.
  • VINTAGE: with about 379 mm* of rainfall in 2017 compared to an average of 434 mm** in this area, the vintage was less rainy. This resulted in the need, in some vineyards, to perform cluster thinning in order to balance the crop load with soil water availability, to favor optimal ripening of grapes. On Pantelleria, in quantitative terms, a drop of about 20% was registered compared to the company's average of recent vintages. *VINTAGE: in Pantelleria we consider the period from October 1 to September 30; RAINFALL: data collected by SIAS, (Sicilian Agrometeorological Service); **the average is calculated from vintage 2013 to vintage 2017.
  • HARVESTING: manual harvesting of grapes into crates with careful selection of the grapes in the vineyard. The Zibibbo harvest at Donnafugata traditionally continues for about 4 weeks, in the districts where the company has its vineyards that differ in altitude, exposure, proximity to or distance from the sea; this year, instead, – due to early ripening – the harvest was shorter, starting on August 17th and concluding on September 4th.
  • VINIFICATION: once the grapes reach the winery, they undergo further selection on a vibrating table before soft pressing. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel at controlled temperatures; the dried grapes – added to the fresh must in several batches – are de-stemmed and selected by hand. During maceration, the dried grapes release their extraordinary legacy of sweetness, freshness and a very personal aroma. The vinification process (fermentation and maceration) last over 1 month. Aging takes place in stainless steel for 8 months and at least 12 months in bottle before being released to the market.
  • ANALYSIS DATA: alcohol 14.12% ABV, total acidity 7.3 g/l, pH 3.83, sugar content: 196 g/l.
 

  • 20240229

    94

    points

    Wine Spectator, February 2024

    "A rich, luxurious sweetie, with flavors of orange glacée, pink grapefruit sorbet, spun honey, apple peel and butterscotch melting on the palate like cotton candy. A bright tang of citrusy acidity and a touch of salinity give this good cut and form, while fragrant hints of lavender, cardamom, white chocolate and Earl Grey waft in on the long, lasting finish. Drink now through 2034. 9,500 cases made, 590 cases imported"

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  • 2023-12-15

    93

    points

    Wine Enthusiast, December 2023

    "This wine is light copper in both color and aroma, as yellow peaches and dried apricots play with varied orange notes on the nose. On the palate, the stone fruit and citrus continue glowing, before a warm, honeyed, almost syrupy finish that recalls a beeswax candle."

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  • 2023-11-28

    96

    points

    Wine & Spirits, November 2023

    "Top 100 Wines of 2023"

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  • 2023-09-01

    94

    points

    Vinous, September 2023

    "The 2021 Ben Ryé is a total pleasure, seducing with a bouquet that mixes sweet smoke with tangerine, mint leaf and clove. Like pure nectar on the palate, this envelopes all it touches in texturally ripe orchard fruits and tropical melon. Sweet spices and sour citrus add contrast toward the close. It finishes spicy and long, leaving a dusty inner floral sensation and hints of candied ginger and lime. Ben Ryé is always a total pleasure and, in my opinion, one of the top dessert wines produced in Italy. This varietal Zibibbo finishes at 197 grams of residual sugar per liter."

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  • 2023-03-21

    96

    points

    Italian Wine Report, March 2023

    "Bright, deep amber gold; heavenly aromas of apricot, honey, orange zest and a hint of saffron. Medium-full, this offer beautifully ripe fruit, a lush mid-palate, very good acidity, outstanding persistence and superb complexity; the finish is lightly sweet and never cloying. Another great Ben Rye, this is nectar of the gods. This should drink well for 12-15 years if stored well, perhaps longer. Superb!"

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  • 20230511

    94

    points

    Wine Advocate, May 2023

    "One of the icons of southern Italy...the wine opens to a dark amber color with aromas of dried fig, white raisin, honey, brown sugar and candied fruit. This hot-vintage expression is especially sweet and thick in texture."

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  • 20220805

    95

    points

    James Suckling, August 2022

    "Concentrated nose of dried apricots, peaches, marmalade, sweet figs, honey and lemon curd. Layered and luscious, with a creamy and honeyed texture. Decadent and intense. Drink or hold."

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  • 20220701

    96

    points

    Vinous, July 2022

    "The 2019 Passito di Pantelleria Ben Ryé is an aromatic rollercoaster of tropical fruits and nectars, blending mango and papaya with peach preserves, then exotic sweet spices and florals, yet with an airy smoky note that pulls it all together. This is weighty, like honey, and nearly as sweet, with bright acids and a saline-mineral tinge that both lifts the expression while also adding savory depth. The finale, if you can call it a finale, seals the deal with its tremendous length and kaleidoscope of flavors, as kiwi, Jordan Almonds, candied orange peels, and citrus sorbet and butter cookie all make an appearance. But the best part of all is that the 2019 never tires the senses and keep urging me back to the glass. Brava, Donnafugata. This is, without a doubt, the most complete Ben Ryé that I've ever tasted. "

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  • 20210830

    96

    points

    James Suckling, August 2021

    "A really complex dessert wine that can still remember that it was made from grapes, and the aromatic Zibibbo grape gives this an extraordinary range of aromas, from caramelized mandarin orange and dried apricot to black tea, via popcorn and sauteed peanuts. Such a beautiful balance of lush exotic-fruit and orange flavors and lively acidity. Everything fits so neatly and this still tastes fantastic now, but the longer you wait the better! Drink or hold."

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  • 20220817

    95

    points

    James Suckling, August 2022

    "So much dried apricot with tangerines, cocoa, sultanas and hints of salted peanuts. Some smoke and tarte tatin, too. Full-bodied with a very sweet palate that’s like Seville-orange marmalade. Vibrant finish. Complex. Drink now."

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  • 20220201

    94

    points

    Wine Enthusiast, February 2022

    "Made with 100% dried Zibibbo grapes, this iconic dessert wine opens with aromas of mature apricot, acacia honey and orange jam. The savory, balanced palate offers candied peach, date, sweet almond and cinnamon. The finish is long and persistent."

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  • 20211215

    93

    points

    Wine Spectator, December 2021

    "A deeply hued, golden sweetie that's beautifully fragrant, with mouth-coating flavors of glazed apricot, candied ginger and salted caramel layered upon aromas of ground cardamom, orange blossom, incense and myrrh. Lightly mouthwatering and harmonious throughout, with a lasting, spiced finish. Drink now through 2028. "

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  • 2021-02-01

    95

    points

    Wine Enthusiast, February 2021

    "Made from dried Zibibbo grapes, this archetypal dessert wine offers alluring aromas of acacia honey, apricot jam and orange zest. The balanced, savory palate delivers date, fig, orange jam and bergamot that persist into the long finish."

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  • 2021-01-29

    94

    points

    Wine Spectator, January 2021

    "Flavors of ripe nectarine and wild strawberry, candied almond and orange marmalade burst on the palate in this gorgeous sweetie. It's mouthcoating with its plush creaminess, but it shows a lovely backbone of mouthwatering acidity for balance, carrying the long finish of ripe fruit, cardamom and ginger spice. Drink now through 2030. 610 cases imported."

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  • 2020-12-08

    95

    points

    James Suckling, December 2020

    "Pale golden-amber color. A full-bodied, sweet white with evolving layers of honey, lilies, candied ginger, peaches, kumquats and lychees. So luscious, complex and balanced. Incredibly long finish. Drink or hold."

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TRADE & MEDIA ASSETS /////////////////

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 94 points, Wine Spectator – Sell Sheet

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 94 points, Wine Spectator – Shelftalker

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 93 points, Wine Enthusiast – Shelftalker

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 93 points, Wine Enthusiast – Sell Sheet

2020 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 94 points, Wine Advocate – Sales Sheet

2020 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 94 points, Wine Advocate – Shelftalker

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 96 points, Wine & Spirits – Sales Sheet

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 96 points, Wine & Spirits – Shelftalker

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 96 points, Italian Wine Report – Sales Sheet

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 96 points, Italian Wine Report – Shelftalker

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 94 points, Vinous – Sales Sheet

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – 94 points, Vinous – Shelftalker

2021 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Tasting Notes

2020 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Tasting Notes

2019 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Tasting Notes

2018 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Tasting Notes

2017 Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Tasting Notes

Donnafugata Properties – Sicily map

Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Non Vintage – Label

Donnafugata Ben Ryé – Non Vintage – Bottle

Donnafugata Photography – Rallo family

Donnafugata Photography – Ben Ryé Beauty shot

Donnafugata Photography – Pantelleria

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