The SOMM Journal

August / September 2015

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Page 14 of 132

14 { THE SOMM JOURNAL } AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2015 { shop talk } Once upon a time, on the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea, three young people began making wine. Over 30 years later, the company they created has revitalized the winegrowing culture of Sicily and brought the wines of this diverse island to the forefront of the international market. Started on a whim in 1980, COS (which earns its name from the first letters of the founders surnames: Cilia, Occhipinti and Strano) was one of the first producers in Sicily to bring biody - namic practices to the island, and rein- troduced the use of terracotta amphora to the fermentation and aging process. Through honesty to the land and a so- old-school-its-new-school approach to winemaking, COS has succeeded in high - lighting the Cerasuolo di Vittoria region and the indigenous varieties of Sicily. "For us, wine- making is about celebrating the richness of nature, without the pre- conceived notions or demand for 'perfection.'" —Giusto Occhipinti, co-owner/winemaker of COS COS at a Glance Year of establishment: 1980 Average annual production: 180,000 bottles Total vineyards: 30 hectares (74 acres) Planted varieties: Nero d'Avola, Frappato, Insolia, Grecanico, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon Owners/winemakers: Giambattista Cilia and Giusto Occhipinti Topography and soil type: Rolling hills of calcareous/siliceous soil with compact clay and tufa HOW ONE PROPERTY HAS CHANGED THE WAY WE LOOK AT SICILIAN WINES Just COS COS is imported by Domaine Select Wine Estates.

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