CALAMONI DI FAVIGNANA:
THE MEDITERRANEAN FASCINATION

Calamoni is a rocky, earthy marine habitat facing the Trapani coast. It is a completely unique example of the extreme conditions seaside viticulture can present and the passion and complete dedication it requires. The Calamoni Estate on Favignana— the only productive vineyard present on the Egadi islands— is situated on a foundation of Quaternary calcarenite limestone formed over millions of years. The land was immersed in the depths of the sea and at the surface we can see it has left its mark in the fossils, shells and fish skeletons which are visible in the emerged rock and the in the stones used to build the dry-stone walls which divide up the 5 hectares of land that the vineyard covers. Here Firriato’s concept of terroir takes on an additional, more profound, exception. The exception being exceptional in every sense of the word, not only for the agronomic decisions made, but also for the soil, climate and environmental aspects of the area. These influential contributing factors are clearly visible in the wines produced by Firriato on Favignana. They form an endogenous complex of conditions which strongly influences the plants’ growth-fruit cycle. It is a unique habitat for native varieties like Nero d’Avola, Perricone, Catarratto, Grillo and Zibibbo which have each found their own way of adapting, and in the eight years since their planting have found their natural balance.

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Calamoni di Favignana

The vineyard

The vineyard lies not even ten meters from the dazzling sea which calls out to you like a siren inviting you to dive in. Unlike Ulysses though, we have the perfect thing to distract us. Prompted by the breeze we turn to look over our shoulder at the five hectares at the tip of the island’s high promontory— land enclosed by uninterrupted lines of low dry-stone walls. It is here we discover the only vineyard in production in all of the Egadi islands—Calamoni di Favignana. As at Cavanera Etnea, Firriato stands out here for its selective yield and its great stylistic scrupulousness which enhances the richness and complexity of each individual territory.

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Calamoni di Favignana

The grape harvest

Every grape harvest at the Calamoni Estate is history in itself. The multiple variables of such a marine habitat interact during the seasons both when the vines are in their dormant stage (end of November-beginning of March) and when they are in their growth-fruit phase (end March-October). The plants’ development is influenced by the extreme variability of the conditions that affect the area’s microclimate, giving life to vintages with core differences between them.

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Calamoni di Favignana

Terroir

The Favonio (Foehn) wind which blows inland from the sea combats the effect of humidity, just as the thicker skins on the grapes form a shield against parasites which contribute to making the characteristics of the wines even more unique.

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Calamoni di Favignana

The wines

The efforts, which only Firriato’s passion can bear in such a difficult and peculiar location, are repaid with three wines from the Favinia line. They are wines which are unique in style, type of production and for their exceptional character. The first wine to take life as a result of this seaside viticulture was “La Muciara”. A blend of Grillo, Catarratto and Zibibbo, it is a wine that has an elegant and complex aromatic spectrum that is prized for its pleasant and vibrant acidity, enveloped by elegant aromatic notes with a flavourful mineral texture. From the red grape varieties of Perricone and Nero d’Avola comes “Le Sciabiche”, characterised by a powerful structure accompanied by enveloping and refined noble tannins against undertones of marked minerality with a rich flavour that recalls the sea. The line is completed by Passulè, an elegant passito from Zibibbo grapes, recognised for its freshness enriched with fruity undertones and here too with a marine tang.

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