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Palacios Remondo, Rioja La Vendimia 2017
Tempranillo 50%, Garnacha 50%
La Vendimia, meaning “the harvest" represents the quality potential of a Spanish Joven wines that have been aged for less than six months in oak barrels. Made by famed Spanish winemaker, Alvaro Palacios, La Vendimia is a blend of Spain's two original star varieties: Tempranillo and Garnacha. Brilliant red in the glass, showing flecks of ruby and gold when held to the light. La Vendimia displays notes of ripe red and yellow cherries both in the nose and on the palate. Juicy orchard fruit are blended seamlessly with silky undertones of soft minerality, culminating in a long, refreshing finish. Meant to drink now through the next three years, this enjoyable wine can also be served slightly chilled.
The Garnacha and Tempranillo grapes were harvested by hand and then selected first in the field and again on a sorting table at the winery, before being put into stainless steel tanks for alcoholic and malolactic fermentation.Following a 20-day maceration with daily soft pump-overs, a portion of finished, first-press wine was aged for 4 months in used French oak tanks and the rest in French (80%) and American (20%) 225L oak barrels, before being fined and filtered before bottling in the late spring of 2017.
One of Alvaro's big decisions as a grower and winemaker was to return in 1999 to his family bodega Palacios Remondo, located in Rioja Baja. He had just spent some time making a name for himself in Priorat but wanted to return to his roots, on the condition that the future direction of the winery was up to him. Palacios Remondo was originally founded in 1948 but it is under Alvaro's leadership that the winery really took off and started to produce some of the most respected wines of the Rioja Baja region albeit probably best described as unconventional at the time for they were not made the traditional way! Despite the invasion of Tempranillo plantings everywhere in Rioja in the late 1980s, Alvaro stood firm in his belief in Garnacha, not least because he knew that the hotter, drier climate of Rioja Baja was better suited to this variety. Current plantings at the bodega are 70% Garnacha and 30% Tempranillo but the proportion of Tempranillo is steadily decreasing. Propriedad is the flagship cuvee of the bodega and comes from different vineyards; Corral de Serrano, Valtomelloso, Valviejo,Valmira and Las Mulgas. The vineyards are dry farmed, mainly clay- based and found on gentle slopes in the vicininity of the Yerga mountain, at an altitude of 400m to 640m. The grapes are hand harvested in the early hours of the morning in order to retain vibrant aromatics and go through de-stemming before starting their alcoholic fermentation in wood. They malolactic fermentation is carried out in large oak vats. The wine is aged for about 14 months in 50% new French oak and bottled without filtration.
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