All wines stored at 55° and 70% humidity
Albahra, or "small sea", is 100% Garnacha Tintorera, also known as Alicante Bouchet. This is one of the very few red grapes with dark-colored juice! With the name Tintorera alluding to this. Plantings here are located outside of Valencia, near the coast sitting at 800 metes elevation on chalky limestone and clay.
Darker than most reds, as one would suspect, but here that shade of colors is somewhat misleading, as the acid-driven and spicy flavors give a decidedly mid-weight wine. Fermented 50% whole cluster with soft punch-downs for 7 days in 4,500-liter cement tanks. And then aged in these same tanks (post-pressing) and bottled with minimal sulphur addition.
This is a great example of how versatile Spanish reds can be when they follow a nice recipe of short fermentations, neutral-vessel aging and most importantly sourcing from cooler climates with fascinating soils that also play their part in endowing freshness.The story behind Envínate traverses through Ribeira Sacra and the Canary Islands.Favoring understated, fresh, and mineral-driven wines from ancient parcels, this project encapsulates the thrill of today's Spain.
Envínate translates to Wine Yourself, and was the creation of four friends who were studying enology at the University of Miguel Hernandez in Alicante in 2005. Roberto Santana, Alfonso Torrente, Laura Ramos, and José Martínez slowly began consulting with wineries after college, in the process discovering forgotten sites that brought with them old vines, but treacherous terrain. The previous generation saw the challenge as insurmountable, but this gang of four knew the treasured opportunity that presented itself.
There's no doubt that these old vines throughout jaw-dropping scenery in Ribeira Sacra and the Canary Islands brings a unique voice to each wine. However, it's the sensitive approach to harvest and winemaking that ultimates define the success of the four. There are no chemicals used in the vineyards and clusters are hand-harvested. In the cuverie grapes are foot-trodden in small bins and fermentation occurs spontaneously from native yeasts on the skins. Wines are raised in old oak barrels and sulphur is only used when necessary at bottling. Each step Envínate takes is to ensure site-specificity is the focus in the bottle.
For me, the wines have an immediacy and joy to them that's so rare to find from first sip to last. They are spicy, fresh, and saline-driven, never compromising the vivid fruitiness that is the foundation of the raw material.
|Grape Variety||Alicante Bouschet|