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Raul Perez, La Vizcaina - La Poulosa, Bierzo 2018
40% Mencia, 30% Bastardo, 30% Garnacha Tintorera
La Poulosa exudes heady blue fruit with notes of salted Scandinavian liquorice, fresh blueberries and currants, with notes of brioche and cracked clay. Creamy, plush on the palate, mouth-filling and sweetly fruited without feeling heavy, with a lovely purity and brightness to the succulent, gorgeous fruit – a real crowd pleaser.
La Poulosa is a red wine from the Bierzo region produced by La Vizcaína de Vinos. This wine is a blend of 4 different grapes varieties: mencía, bastardo and garnacha tintorera.
The grapes come from old vines between 60 and 80 years old that are scattered across small plots totalling 2 hectares located in the warmest areas of Valtuille. Climate is influenced by both the Atlantic and continentality. The soils are shallow and clay-based
The harvest is carried out manually. Fermentation takes place in large wooden barrels of up to 5,000L capacity. The juice of the wine macerates on its skins for 2-3 months, depending on the quality of the vintage and valuations of the winery team.
The wine is then aged in seven year old French oak barrels for 12 months, and bottled without being clarified or filtered.
La Vizcaína de Vinos is a project conceived at the hands of the renowned winemaker Raúl Pérez and his nephew César Marquez. Located where the first winery of the Pérez family used to be, their aim is to express the various nuances of the Valtuille de Abajo terroir.
First rising to prominence as the winemaker at his family estate Castro Ventosa, in 2004 he branched out on his own and now maintains a dizzying array of projects in Bierzo and further afield in Rias Baixas, Ribeira Sacra, and the Douro with Dirk Niepoort. One of his most exciting projects is particularly far-flung. It is a collaboration in South Africa with Swartland-icon Eben Sadie; producing two barrels of Monastrell that are famously hard to track down. In fact, it is near-impossible to keep track of all the labels with which Raul Perez is involved. He thinks it is close to 100.
Both the La Vizcaina and Ultreia cellars are crammed to the rafters with barrels that contain either the next-big-thing, or purely experimental wines, in the truest sense of the word. Bierzo is still a region largely untapped by producers, as the great vineyards of the Northern Rhone or Burgundy once were too.
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