Escalada do Sil Tinto<< Previous wine Next wine >>
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?A history project from Alberto Orte, Escalada do Sil is a elegant, powerfully aromatic red from a region that has become best known for white wine production. Produced from Merenzao (also known as Bastardo, and in France, Trousseau), Mencia and Garnacha Tintorera, this is a blend that evokes a time gone by, when red wines were favored in the region. The fruit all comes from steeply sloped mountain sites that are terraced, requiring hand harvesting only.
RATING HISTORY:2018 93 WA, 92 JS; 2017 94 VM, 93 WA, 93 JS; 2016 93 JS, 93 IWR, 92 Vinous; 2015 93 View from the Cellar, 90 W&S, 90 JS; 2014 95 JS
GRAPE:60% Merenzao, 30% Mencia, 10% Garnacha Tintorera. Vines planted in 1993. Tended in slate and granite sandy soil with traces of clay at 500- 750 m (1,640-2,460 ft) elevation.
PAIRING SUGGESTIONS:The lift and elegance of Escalada do Sil and its bright red fruit beg for earthy, savory flavors. Mushrooms, roasted game and poultry are brilliant pairings for Escalada do Sil.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING:Whole cluster maceration for 28 days followed by fermentation. Once fermentation has taken place, the wine is pressed and aged in 500 liter French oak barrels for 15 months. After one month of natural decantation, the wine is gently filtered then bottled.
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE:The vineyards are located in the autonomous region of Galicia, in far northwestern Celtic Spain, within the Valdeorras DO (Zone 1) in Valdeorras district within the province of Ourense. The vineyards are in the mountain town of Larouco at 500 to 750 m (1,640 to 2,460 ft) elevation. The soil is composed of slate and granite topsoil with a thin clay subsoil. This soil profile is poor in organic matter. The vines yield 2.5 kg (about 6 lbs) of grapes per vine, compared to the average of 7.5 kg (around 17 lbs) per vine in Valdeorras. The area's climate has an average temperature of 66.2 F from April to October, among the lowest average temperatures in Spain, with 27.56 inches of annual rainfall. This low level of precipitation helps prevent overnight frost. The cool temperatures of this Atlantic-influenced climate (Zone 1) provide a longer ripening period, which results in bright wines with great aromatic expression.
TASTING NOTES:Opaque ruby. Sexy mineral- and smoke-accented dark fruit, incense and potpourri scents are complemented by suggestions of cola and smoky minerals. Sweet, seamless and concentrated, offering intense boysenberry, cherry liqueur and violet pastille flavors that become livelier and spicier with aeration. Sappy, palate-staining and lively; subtle tannins fold smoothly into the lingering blue fruit. -- Josh Raynolds.
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