The Ocone Estate lies in the province of Benevento in the Campagnia region of Italy. On this very rocky, mountainous area, some 40 miles east of Naples, Domenico Ocone produces several of Italy's most original and compelling wines from "heirloom varieties": Aglianico, Coda di Volpe, Falanghina, and Greco. They flourish in Ocone's organically-farmed vineyard.
The Ocone estate is dedicated to organic viticulture, though they have started experimenting with biodynamic viticulture as well. The winery is certified organic, and is a member of the Italian Association for Organic Farming (AIAB). They only use natural fertilizer, and no herbacides or pesticides any kind are used in the vineyards. During the winemaking and elevage, nothing is added, including yeasts, enzymes or even SO2. There is only a tiny bit of sulphur dioxide added at bottling (but only in the head space under the cork).
The Ocone family has been producing wine since 1910, but like most producers in the town, the Ocones initially sold their wine locally to demijohns, selling off the balance of their production in bulk. This all changed in the 1960s when Luigi Ocone took over the estate. He devoted himself to careful vineyard selection, restriction of vine yields, and the installation of modern equipment in the cellar. Since then, quality at the estate has soared.
Unquestionably, Ocone's ancient varieties deserve to be better known. Whether it is the Greco or the Aglianico, or even the Falaghina, each offers expressive, generous, flavors that glorify the regional table and bring dimension, freshness, and excitement. In addition, each of Ocone's wines is pure and individual, and each speaks eloquently of its place of origin. less