Tuesday, 25 June 2019

Vino Blanco Socaire 2017 12.5%, Primitivo Collantes

Appearance
Bright gold with lemony gold reflections.
Nose
Full, clean, fresh and attractively aromatic with notes of apple naturally, both fresh and stewed, but also pear, paraguayo peach, mandarine peel and traces of white flowers and honeysuckle. There is also a trace of salinity which adds a nice savoury touch.
Palate
Slightly fuller than expected and beautifully rounded even though there is a beautifully balanced acidity. There is a delightfully seductive summery fruit and flower character yet underneath there is a dry chalky albariza texture and a faint salinity, and the balance between all that is perfect. A serious wine with lots of charm.
Comments
Socaire is becoming one of the classic table wines of the region. It comes from 100% Palomino grapes grown in the firm´s Matalian vineyard near Chiclana and fairly close to the Atlantic. The soil is the lentejuelas type of albariza. After selection the grapes are pressed and the juice is fermented in butts previously seasoned with Fino where it ages for up to 2 years´depending on the characteristics of the vintage. The vessels are kept full to avoid the appearance of flor and highlight the character of the vineyard. The back label states that the wine was aged for 24 months but this can´t be right as it would still be ageing. It should be more like 19-20 months. Maybe they forgot to change the label. Anyway, it is an excellent wine, and the 2015 vintage scored 91 Parker points.
Price
12.95 euros, Licores Corredera

Monday, 24 June 2019

24.6.19 Jerez Awaits Official Declaration of Drought


There is no rain, and none is forecast for the rest of this hydrological year which ends in September. The situation in the province has become alarming with three of the five districts already in severe drought. There was virtually no rainfall in May, which was the driest on record. Accumulated rainfall so far this year in the area stands at approximately 500 litres/m2, way below last year and the 731.7 litre average for 1971-2000. Reservoirs contain 15% less water than a year ago, and they were only at 60% of capacity then. Vineyard irrigation is not permitted.

One of the reservoirs
The Jerez area grows many other crops other than grapes, including sunflowers, cotton, beetroot and cereals, all of which have seen worrying drops in yield – cereals for example are down 35%, and there is barely enough water or pasture for livestock. Once drought is officially declared various forms of aid can be claimed from the EU or from agricultural insurance but their terms are tough. Naturally the vineyards will be affected too, but as vines have much deeper roots and grow on albariza which absorbs huge amounts of water, the effects will be less severe, and while yields will certainly be down, especially with a hot summer predicted, there will be a reduced risk of cryptogamic problems like mildew.

Saturday, 22 June 2019

Manzanilla en rama Carvajal 15%, Carvajal Wines SA

Appearance
Mid strawy gold with golden highlights.
Nose
Fairly light at first but it soon comes out. Fresh sea air and olive brine salinity with a little bitterness from the flor, traces of straw, herbs and some minerality from the albariza. It is a serious wine with the faintest oxidative and cabezuela  notes adding a lightly buttery complexity. Vet attractive.
Palate
Quite full, with considerable depth and perfect balance of mineral, acetaldehyde and acidity with the more buttery autolytic character of the cabezuela. The flavour is quite intense with a lovely bitter edge and the usual dry chalky texture and long clean tasty finish.
Comments
Jaime Carlos de Carvajal Castrillón, who spent many years working for González Byass in the province of Cádiz, set up Carvajal Wines back in 2014, and now sells a range of wines which he selects from bodegas in the Marco de Jerez for his own label. He started by making a selection of red wines produced by Barbadillo under a 5 year contract resulting in his excellent Cobijado and is now selling Palo Cortado from Cayetano del Pino and selecting a range of wines from Delgado Zuleta in Sanlúcar which they bottle for him en rama. While the own label Sherries all have circus-related imagery on the labels they are wines of serious quality.
Price
15.65, Licores Corredera