Alfredo Maestro, Lovamor Albillo 2020
There’s a peach and apricot stone fruit and baked orchard fruit with floral notes of honeysuckle and white lilac blossom. The palate is dry with high acidity, there’s a salty character, with banana and pear drop notes, melding with leafy autumn forest floor and some aromatic herbal lavender hints, followed an orange zest quality. Superbly textured with a lasting finish.
Peñafiel, Valladolid, Ribera de Duero, Spain
100% Albillo [100-120 year-old vines]
Maestro Tejero winery in Peñafiel was born in 1998 in the heart of the Ribera del Duero. From 2000 to 2006 the winery grew, gradually adding other plots in Castrillo de Duero, Olmos de Peñafiel, Quintanilla de Arriba, Bocos de Duero, Olmedillo de Roa, and Arauzo de Salce. In 2007 the search for land on higher ground leads to the discovery of land in Valtiendas nearly 1,000 meters above sea level with old tempranillo vineyards planted on soils with boulders. The diversity of plants and soils give the wines a unique, distinct personality.
Albillo or Albillo Real is a white Spanish wine grape variety planted primarily in the Ribera del Duero region, and also in Madrid, Ávila and Galicia. The grape has mostly neutral flavors with a light perfume aroma. It has a high glycerol index which confers smoothness to the wines. It is sometimes added to the red wines of the Ribera del Duero for added aromatics. The berries are of average size, round in shape and golden in colour. The grape bunches are generally small and compact. It is an early ripening variety and in central Spain is usually harvested in mid August.
Ribera del Duero is a Spanish Denominación de Origen Protegida (DOP) located in the country's northern plateau and is one of eleven 'quality wine' regions within the autonomous community of Castile and León. It is also one of several recognised wine-producing regions to be found along the course of the Duero river. The region is characterised by a largely flat, rocky terrain and is centred on the town of Aranda de Duero, although the most famous vineyards surround Peñafiel and Roa de Duero to the west, where the regional regulatory council or Consejo Regulador for the denominación is based.
Lovamor is made with fruit sourced from low-yielding 100-120-year-old Albillo bush-vines grown at 800-1100 metres elevation in the Ribera del Duero. Here the soils are sandy, clay-calcareous, and the climate is Spanish-continental with cold winters, hot days and cold nights during the summer months, all of which combine to produce wines with robust fruit and brisk acidity if the grapes are farmed well and picked at the right time.
This cuvée sees a wee bit of skin contact and is fermented with wild yeasts in steel vats with 6 days of skin. It matures in vat on the lees, clarifies naturally over the winter, and is eventually bottled unfined & unfiltered without the addition of SO2.