Tuesday, 12 August 2014

La Bota de Palo Cortado Sanlucar No. 52 18%, Equipo Navazos

Pale amber with traces of copper, legs.
Big with lots of soft oxidative notes, quince, quite savoury, trace Marmite, quite yeasty and savoury yet some Amontillado notes such as that implied sweet nuttiness - hazelnut, almond and walnut, clean, fine and very complex for such a young wine,  it can't hide its youth but that gives added character - and versatility.
Really quite tangy, dry, quite light and very fresh, some delightful slightly sweet caramel and walnut notes, no wood, amazingly "grown up" for its youth, nutty oxidative notes balance beautifully with the freshness and there is the slightest hint of bitterness and still that tang showing Sanlucar origins at the finish which is pretty long and very clean.
This seriously interesting wine was made from Palomino grapes grown in the Pago Miraflores near Sanlucar in 2010. The must was fermented in steel tanks at bodegas La Guita, where it had only a little interaction with flor, so this is really more of an oxidative wine. It was fortified to 17.5% then aged in 600 litre Sherry butts and 225 litre Bordeaux "barriques" filled almost to the brim to avoid excessive oxidation. The contents of 6 botas cañon (butts sitting on the ground) were selected, these having been seasoned with old Amontillado, giving more complexity and depth. Despite the short interaction with flor, the wine still has noticeable minerality as it comes from coastal vineyards. It was bottled in April 2014 at a modest 18% vol.

This is a ground-breaking wine. Probably the youngest Palo Cortado ever, pretty well from the start, and a vintage wine to boot. Yet technically it satisfies all the legal requisites and is delicious as well- and perhaps more food friendly than the usual heavier, older style of PC. We have mainly Eduardo Ojeda's experience and sense of adventure to thank for this gem.
Around £36 in the UK (as always worth every penny), importers Alliance Wine

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