Region: Rias Baixas, Spain
Viticulture: Organic + Biodynamic
Soils: Sand + Granite + Clay
Vinification: Hand-harvested, pneumatic press without destemming, then fermentation starts in stainless steel tanks. Transferred to a mixture of stainless steel, used barrels, and tinajas, with weekly batonnage (lees stirring) for the first month.
Aging: 7 months in mixed vessels
Fining or Filtering: None
Notes from the Importer: Silvia Prieto was born in Pontevedra, the closest city to Rías Baixas. Her journey with wine began in 2003 at wine-tastings in the area, and she first met Alberto in 2009. A lab technician by training, she founded her own company that provided analysis and consultation for wineries and winemakers and emphasized traditional approaches without additives and organic viticulture. Her acquaintance with Alberto continued and developed, and she proceeded to join the project in August of 2015 first for the harvest and then as a partner.
It has turned out to be a fortuitous pairing. Alberto and Silvia have different backgrounds and personalities but come to winemaking with a meticulous and restless intensity that has only increased in their time together. Together they have expanded production and simultaneously deepened their focus. Their bond is expressed in a shared desire to improve, constantly questioning their approach and themselves to refine their craft. The sequence of new wines, from new vineyard plots, made in different vessels or even from different grapes and regions reflects their tireless search to understand, to create, and to translate terroir. In discussing their wines, they are never satisfied, always finding a way to improve their work and its results. This conversation informs the whole of the project: Alberto and Silvia work together as equal partners in the vineyard and the cellar, and the wines express their collaboration.
The essence of their approach is reverence for the vineyard, from organic farming to fermentation by native yeasts: "In the winery, we respect the grapes as much as possible, we don't use any winemaking additions besides moderate amounts of SO2. We do not ferment with pie de cuba (pied-de-cuve) in order to preserve the identity of each vineyard," Alberto says. To express the edginess of the naturally high in acidity Albariño grape, he eschews adding potassium, which is what many in Rías Baixas use to de-acidify and soften their wines. Malolactic fermentation rarely occurs, and the wines spend a good amount of time (often a year or more) on their lees before being bottled without clarification or filtration.