2018 Do Ferreiro Albarino Cepas Vellas, Rias Baixes, Galicia, Spain

2018 Do Ferreiro Albarino Cepas Vellas, Rias Baixes, Galicia, Spain



This winery, founded in 1973, is currently run by Gerardo Méndez. Gerardo owns 10 hectares, three of which are over 50 years old, and one of which is over 150 years old. The vineyards follow organic guidelines, avoiding the use of pesticides and non-organic fertilizers. In addition, Gerardo is devoted to the use of indigenous yeasts believing that through their usage the true qualities of
his terruño can appear. Gerardo farms over 175 plots of albariño, all located in the sub-zone of Salnès. This valley’s proximity to the ocean and protection by mountain ranges has gained it the reputation for being the best area in Rías Baixas for viticulture. The blend of Gerardo’s plots is what makes up the Do Ferreiro Albariño.

The Cepas Vellas is from Gerardo’s historic 1.5 hectare plot of 150+ years old Albarino vines. These vines are planted on a hillside vineyard of mainly sandy (broken granite) composition.  The vines are planted in the traditional elevated pergola supported by 8 foot cut granite pilings.  The “vines” are so old they resemble thick barked trees more than vines. The grapes are de-stemmed and cold-soaked for 5 hours before fermentation. Fermentation with indigenous yeasts occurs in stainless steel tanks, followed by 11 months of extended aging on the lees.  No oak is used.

“The 2018 Albariño Cepas Vellas has to be one of the finest vintages of this old-vine (reaaaaally old vine!) cuvée, in a vintage where the wine reached levels of elegance and harmony that I don’t remember before. After having the wine in the glass for almost two hours, the nose was explosive, and the palate felt like bottled electricity, with effervescent acidity that makes you salivate, and it had incredible depth and concentration. They now tell me they think the vines could have been planted in 1785, in a property that had been a granite quarry, so I don’t need to tell you what the soils are like here. This is a zone with a lot of fog, and that brings intense salinity to the wines. I need to dig out some bottles of 2010 I have somewhere in my cellar and check the evolution, because they tell me, and I agree, that this is a modern version of the 2010. There are 8,000 bottles of this wine. It was bottled in September 2019.” – 96 Pts – Wine Advocate



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