Los Bermejos Diego Seco Lanzarote DO 2016 - CERTIFIED ORGANIC
Country: SPAIN / Region: CANARY ISLANDS / Appellation: LANZAROTE DO / Varietal(s): DIEGO --- Los Bermejos is owned and run by winemaker Ignacio Valdera, on the island of Lanzarote, the most challenging of the Canary Islands on which to produce wine. A mere 125 km from the African coastline, conditions here are extreme, earning the island the reputation of “vineyard of the impossible.” Wine-making in the Canary Islands began at the end of the 15th century. During the 16th century, amazingly, wine was the most important export. Lanzarote was the last island of the Canaries to enter into wine growing and has the oldest cellar in the islands – El Grifo – which has been continuously producing wine since 1775. The terrain of Lanzarote resembles a lunar landscape more than a traditional vineyard, as little to no vegetation can survive in the porous, black volcanic soil that only receives a few inches of rain per year. Adding to the challenging conditions are the fierce winds from the Atlantic Ocean and Sahara desert, resulting in the innovative wine-growing technique of planting each vine in a small hole, or hoyos, protected from the elements by stone walls. The hoyos also allow the vines to better access the organic matter beneath the top layer of solidified lava. As might be expected, yields are very low and all the vineyard work is done by hand (using pack camels), and organically (the winery is in the process of certification). Ignacio occasionally supplements each crop with purchased fruit from growers who share his vision of sustainable viticulture. Diego, also known locally as vijariego blanco, is a vigorous, high-acid grape grown only in the Canary Islands. 100% diego, this wine is fermented with indigenous yeasts in stainless steel and aged three months in tank sur lie. Deceptively clear and light in color, this wine is complex and savory with smoky notes of quince and apricot and a bright, mineral palate. Enjoy this rarity with paella or grilled octopus.
MicroBio Wines "Correcaminos" Castilla y León 2016 - NATURAL WINE
Country: SPAIN / Region: CASTILLA Y LEÓN / Appellation: N/A / Varietal(s): TEMPRANILLO --- Winegrower Ismael Gozalo has deep roots in Nieva, a village in the province of Segovia located in the Rueda DO. While this region is now the heart of industrial verdejo production, Gozalo has chosen to go in the opposite direction, making natural, biodynamic wines instead. The predominantly sandy soils of the area make it possible to still find old pre-phylloxera and ungrafted vines, and Gozalo's natural approach makes the most of the intense character of these rare vines and the terroir and climate they thrive in. Fresh and luscious, the Correcaminos ("Road Runner") comes from tempranillo planted on slate soils in 1949, fermented in stainless steel and bottled unfined and unfiltered with no added sulfur. Bright and juicy with flavors of sour cherry and tangy purple plums, crushed blackberries and black currants, oregano, earthy licorice, and a hint of tobacco, this is a winner served slightly chilled with grilled chicken breasts with blackberry-corn salsa.
Antidoto Cepas Viejas Ribera del Duero DO 2014 - ORGANICALLY GROWN
Country: SPAIN / Region: CASTILLA Y LEÓN / Appellation: RIBERA DEL DUERO DO / Varietal(s): TINTO FINO aka TEMPRANILLO --- Over the past quarter century, Ribera del Duero has become arguably the most successful wine region of Spain, yet many of its oldest vines and best terroirs lie in the remote eastern part of the region, the province of Soria, which remains largely unexplored by many winemakers. Soria is sometimes described as the "rooftop of Ribera", with cooler temperatures, and sandy soils that have remained phylloxera free for 150 years. This results in the greatest concentration of old, ungrafted rootstock in Europe. Young French winemaker Bertrand Sourdais brought the potential of Soria to light with his groundbreaking wines at Atauta, a village within Soria. However, when Atauta was sold in 2009 during Spain’s economic downturn, he shifted focus to his family’s Chinon estate in France’s Loire Valley. Returning to Soria, he began again to make wines, particularly from the ancient tinto fino grape (an old form of tempranillo), combining the finesse of Rioja with the power of Ribera. Sourdais sources from the best vineyard sites—many pre-phylloxera—and manages the viticulture himself. Wherever possible, he employs organic and biodynamic methods. Antídoto (Spanish for “antidote”), has a personal meaning for Bertrand in the wake of Atauta’s sale. But the wine also provides an antidote to the many Ribera del Duero wines that substitute heavy-handed winemaking for expression of terroir and varietal (as well as an antidote to high wine prices in the region!) A generous, perfumed nose provides an introduction to a palate full of character and concentrated dark fruit, with wild, herbal influences (raspberry leaf), and a fine balance of freshness and tannins. Touches of savory dried meat and pine needles on a persistent finish make this great for opening with buffalo burgers with smoky red pepper sauce.