• My name is Marilena Barbera
    and I am a winegrower.
    I live and make my wines in Menfi, Sicily.

Harvest 2014
Pin It

Despite what has happened in the North of Italy, harvest 2014 in Sicily was one of the best I have experienced in my life

Harvest is over, malolactic fermentations completed, and the new wines are just starting to show more precise indications on their final personality. It’s time for big season-cleaning: all tanks are bleached, the fridge tubes, the press and the destemming machine are stored away for the winter, steel flanges have been bathed in caustic soda and wine pipes sanitized. The water jet cleaner is working overtime: winery floors and walls, drain inlets and catch basins are now spit and polished.

It’s also time for tasting and thinking, and this is something that brings more than a smile to my face this year.

It was good. Better: it was very good.
Downy mildew, which bothered me tremendously between May and June, caused only limited damages on grapes’ quantity and had no effects on quality. We had mild temperatures both in July and August and not one single day of rain. Also humidity gave us a break, and salt and wind did a great job cleaning and preventing further mildew to develop.

We harvested excellent white grapes: high acidity (I obviously mean “high” in a Sicilian way) and amazing aromatic concentration blessed us with round, fresh and tasty wines, with a distinctive saline aftertaste. All red grapes gave birth to fine and well balanced wines, many of which have all the potential for a long refining.
The new wooden tank has been my best friend: 30 hectolitres of Slavonian oak housed in rapid succession Alicante and Perricone for their fermentation, then a part of the Nero d’Avola for malolactic, and finally the Cabernet Sauvignon for refining. Here La Vota 2014 will stay a minimum of 10 more months before going to sleep downstairs in the big barrel.

Airplanes, trains and cars are back in my everyday life, and I started over with my travels a few weeks ago knowing we all at the winery did a good job, and completely trusting the wines to come.

If you want to read more about my personal judgement on
the 2014 wines, please click here to display or download the complete report.

Ph: courtesy Francesca Ciancio


Tags: vendemmia, report vendemmia, vendemmia in Sicilia

My story

My story

We have been winegrowers for three generations: a 100 years long story, a legacy of love and respect
Wine book

Wine book

Always up-to-date with all available wines and vintages: ready for browsing, or for immediate download

Photo album

Photo album

My book of photo shots from my vineyard in Sicily, available in HR for download - please cite the source

Video gallery

Video gallery

My YouTube channel with harvest stories, tastings, travels and meetings with very special people


Between a road map and a winery notebook, a personal digital moleskine with notes on winemaking, tastings and events, people I meet, places I see: my everyday life in the wine world.

  • Menfi DOC: Wine and Terroir

    Menfi DOC: Wine and Terroir

    The DOC Menfi Appellation: from history to landscapes, and from climate to grape varieties, everything you need to know about one of the most interesting wine regions of Sicily.

    Read more

  • Zibibbo, a story of Sicilian identity

    Zibibbo, a story of Sicilian identity

    Zibibbo is one of the rarest grapes in the word with a triple attitude: it is a wine grape, a table grape and a raisin grape. Learn about its long history that dates back 5.000 years.

    Read more

  • What wine producers can do for climate change

    What wine producers can do for climate change

    Electricity is a significant expenditure items in a winery’s budget, and it has a great environmental impact. My energy-related choices make my winery 100% sustainable.

    Read more

  • Wild yeast and the miracle of life

    Wild yeast and the miracle of life

    Wild yeast and spontaneous fermentations, key points of the natural wine movement, are linked to Mediterranean traditions that remain a source of inspiration for winegrowers all over the world.

    Read more

This site uses cookies and third-party cookies to provide you with a better experience and service.
When navigating or using our services, you agree to our use of them. You can change your cookie settings at any time.