Alfredo Maestro, Vina Almate 2018Regular price $19.00 Save $-19.00
Alfredo Maestro’s family came to Peñafiel from the Basque Country. Having grown up amongst the vines, he had a great interest in wine and started making his own from an early age. From the beginning, he farmed organically, yet in the cellar he worked literally by the book, teaching himself enology from a textbook, using all the tricks to make a “correct” wine of Ribera del Duero. He would use cultured yeasts, tannins, color enhancers, etc. It took some time, but Alfredo eventually had a revelation—as an organic farmer, why would he use chemicals to adjust the finished wine? It made the most sense for his cellar work to match the integrity which he used in the vineyard—so he did just that. He began eliminating unnecessary products and additives. By 2003 he was making wine without additives whatsoever, including sulfur.
Tentenublo, Rioja 2018Regular price $25.00 Save $-25.00
In Rioja, it’s not uncommon for a few big producers to exude almost god-like status. They produce large amounts of wine and their market share is incredibly strong. The style of these large producers is what nearly everyone in Spain deems the standard for Rioja. However, Roberto Olivan is one the most exciting names among the new generation. He is challenging the preconceived notions of Rioja and tempranillo being produced in the Rioja region. The fruit is sourced from vineyards (at 620 meters in elevation) that he inherited from his mother. Olivan’s inspiration for this Tentunoblo is decidedly fruit and place-oriented. If one looks back far enough in the annals of Rioja’s rich winemaking history, it was the vineyard work and the soil rather than the au courant oak-aging that defined the wine. In this sense, Olivan’s wines are truly traditional.
Tentenublo, Escondite Del Ardacho Rioja "Veriquete" 2017Regular price $50.00 Save $-50.00
Variety: Garnacha, Viura, Tempranillo
After a long career working for large winemakers in the broader world of wine, Roberto Oliván decided to follow the path of the vigneron (or vinegrower), with the fixation of making great wines and finding clarity in a market where he finds there are shadows. Tentenublo Wines has just around 10 hectares of its own vineyards spread over 26 plots, all of them located in Viñaspre, where the altitude of the Sierra Cantabria Mountains and the impact of both Atlantic and Mediterranean climates stand out. Roberto and family grow what does best in the limestone and red sandstone soils of the Rioja: Tempranillo, Garnacha, Viura, and Malvasia. Escondite Del Ardacho is actually a line of very small-production bottlings and named for a native lizard species. “Veriquete” is an intriguing bottle made of the aforementioned varieties and sourced from vines ranging from 50-100 years old all from a single plot.
Tentenublo, Xerico Rioja 2018Regular price $25.00 Save $-25.00
Variety: Tempranillo, Viura
Tentenublo is the name given to the ringing of bells aimed at fighting off hailstorms in some Rioja villages. Working organically, using native yeast fermentation, and limited sulphur, winemaker Roberto applies Rioja’s long established custom of barrel aging working mainly with French oak to craft wines of substance and character. The property of Tentenublo, despite its small size, is described as a collection of several distinct microclimates. The vines are spread throughout 22 parcels in the foothills of the Cantabria mountains. The estate is planted mainly to the classic red and white Rioja varieties including Tempranillo, Garnacha and Viura. Each site is influenced to some extent by the Ebro River, the Atlantic Ocean and the Mediterranean Sea.
Enfield Wine Company, Pretty Horses 2015Regular price $35.00 Save $-35.00
Variety: Tempranillo, Graciano
Enfield Wine Co. is the passion project of John Lockwood and his wife Amy Seese. Founded in 2010, the project is very young, but despite that has recently started to gain attention nationwide. I first started to taste with John in 2013 and have been championing the honest wines ever since. These are truly some of my favorites from California. John only uses native yeast and the wine is never filtered or cold stabilized. John’s passion is contagious and I’m thrilled to pass it along to you.
Winemaking: Both lots were co-fermented with 5% Graciano for brightness and acidity. The bunches were partially de-stemmed into an open top fermenter where the grapes were gently foot tread and punched down 1-2 times a day during a native yeast fermentation. The wine was aged for 14 months in neutral oak barrels including approximately 20% American Oak.
Lopez de Heredia, Vina Cubillo Crianza 2010Regular price $34.00 Save $-34.00
This winery stands wreathed in a mist of legend. Their wines are not easy to get, and almost impossible to forget. Most devotees will tell you if you can get your hands on their wines, don’t hesitate. Since 1890 – a period spanning one hundred and thirty vintages- they have only declared twenty Gran Reserva vintages. The Vina Cubillo is a Crianza from, speaking of legends, the 2010 vintage, but this Crianza will outperform Gran Reservas from a great deal of other producers.
Primarily Tempranillo with Grenache, Mazuelo and Graciano topping off the cuvee, this luscious wine offers red fruit in abundance that quickly translates in a cedar and spice savoriness. The finish is superb and seems to keep going…
Bodegas Akutain, Cosecha 2016Regular price $20.00 Save $-20.00
Variety: Tempranillo, Garnacha
Four decades of history have created an incredible wine that is still very much an underdog in a region dominated by big names. Juan Peñagaricano Akutain was an engineer in the Basque region, working more on the wine equipment than the wine itself. However, with many tastings and learning from many of the wineries that put Rioja as a wine region on the map, Juan decided to plant his own vineyards in 1975. His desire was to work only with his own fruit and to control every step of the farming and winemaking. He purchased a horse and strived to make wines in the traditional style of the famed wine houses of the region. Less than 20 acres of vines means the estate is manageable. Juan's son has now taken over the day-to-day operations.
DaTerra Viticultores, Camino de la Frontera 2018Regular price $38.00 Save $-38.00
Laura Lorenzo was the winemaker and viticulturist at an established Ribeira Sacra estate for close to a decade. In 2014, she struck out on her own with her project Daterra Viticultores, and now works about 4.5 hectares organically in the Val do Bibei-Quiroga subzone of Ribeira Sacra, and with this wine she extends her reach into Valdeorras to the southeast with the 2015 vintage. Through her meticulous work in the vineyard, Laura’s goal is to cultivate life in her soils that were once damaged by industrial viticulture, and to bring harmony to her vineyards and grapes. In the winery, Laura lets the grapes speak for themselves - fermenting with wild yeasts, utilizing older wooden casks for fermentation and elevage, and adding only small amounts of SO2 during the winemaking process, with no clarification, filtration, or adjustments to the wines.
Camino de la Frontera Tinto comes from an ancient, northwest-facing vineyard in the Parque Natural de Los Arribes del Duero, owned & cultivated by Angel Mayor, and planted with mostly Juan Garcia & Tinta Madrid balanced by other indigenous varieties. The grapes were harvested by hand on September 14th, wild yeast fermented 50% whole-cluster and 50% destemmed in used 500L French oak barrels with 13 days of skin maceration, and then raised in the same barrels for 10 months. This is a red wine of both elegance and rusticity, with a floral nose, soft tannins and bright acidity