OCTOBER SAUVAGE–ENVINATE ALBAHRA 2018
It is incredibly exciting to include a grower as well-known and sought-after as Envínate in this month’s selections. A collective project of four like-minded friends in wine, Envínate (literally: wine yourself) represents what’s exciting about the new generation in both Spanish wine and natural wine more broadly. Ranging from the Canary Islands, to the coast of Galicia, to the inland vineyards of Castilla-la- Mancha, Envínate aims to purely translate the terroir of each of their individual vineyard sites into the glass, by way of native varieties farmed naturally. Our selection this month comes from their vineyards in the heartland of Castilla-la-Mancha, which are planted to Garnacha Tintorera (better known as Alicante Bouschet) and Moravia Agria.
Though Garnacha Tintorera is prone to ripening at very high levels of alcohol–just like its parent, Grenache–the team at Envínate picks early in order to preserve acidity. In terms of winemaking, the attention to detail seen here is top-tier. Each individual parcel is picked and vinified separately. The Garnacha Tintorera is left with roughly 50% whole bunches and is then pressed by foot(!) before spontaneous fermentation begins.. The Moravia Agria, which represents thirty percent of the final blend is completely destemmed, fermented naturally and raised in French oak. The ultimate blend is produced without fining or filtration and with only minimal sulfur. Though many Spanish reds are known for their heft and concentration, Albahra retains a degree of drinkability hinged upon its uber- silky tannins, the likes of which will rival your favorite Cru Beaujolais. This glorious Tinto is best drunk cool.