Although Nino Caravaglio “officially” founded his cantina in 1992, his family has cultivated vines and other crops on the island since the 16th century. His vineyards have been certified organic almost since the winery’s creation, with 37 acres on Salina. The island’s arid climate and cleansing breezes make Caravaglio’s commitment to natural farming that much easier; mold and disease resistance are not big issues here, and the exceedingly good health and cleanliness of the fruit enables Caravaglio to keep added sulfites to the barest minimum.
This bottling, aptly named “Infatata” (“enchanted”), includes an image on its label of a single, triangle-shaped vineyard, called ‘Tricoli,’ which climbs up the side of an ancient volcano. The grapes from this site are hand-harvested and sorted in the vineyard, then fermented on indigenous yeasts in stainless steel tanks. It spends just three months resting in tank before bottling, and here we are—a bright, floral, saline white that hints at both Spanish Albariño and French Muscadet but adds an extra layer of intrigue. Malvasia Bianca has a more floral, tropical aromatic profile and a slightly waxy texture reminiscent of some northern Rhône whites, and this Salina-grown interpretation brings all of that to the table along with a pronounced sea-air salinity. In the glass, it’s a deep yellow-gold, with aromas of orange blossom, acacia honey, white peach, preserved lemon, green herbs, and caper brine.