Tuesday, 20 May 2014

La Bota de Fino No 35 15% Equipo Navazos

Pale amber with gold reflections, quite plentiful slow legs.
Intense, dry bitter flor, traces wood, dry scrubland, that smell as you enter a bodega of damp wine barrels, fairly weighty, traces of olive brine and sourdough along with a little oxidation and nascent Amontillado notes of salted roasted almond. Approaching Fino-Amontillado, but you're not allowed to use that term now. Still lots of Fino characteristics and a savoury hint from autolysis. Fantastically complex.
Full, savoury autolytic hints, bitter, nutty, intensely flavoured, with that slight oxidative note giving it terrific length, very dry with a little acidity and just a hint of glycerol rounding it off. It really fills the palate with flavour and tantalises with the balance between the glycerol and bitterness. Superb.
Made from Macharnudo Alto grapes and fermented in barrel, this wine was drawn from the casks for bottling in June 2012, and is a blend of Valdespino wines from the Inocente solera, 1st and 2nd criaderas. It has an average age of about 10 years and is bottled en rama - with minimal filtration - or enough to remove any flor. It really demonstrates how much colour and flavour is lost in filtration, but the down side is the reduced shelf life. It has to be said, though, that I have tasted many en rama wines long after their "sell by date", and without exception they were still delicious, even though they had evolved in bottle. In fact Equipo Navazos recommend trying it over the next few years - as long as it is properly stored.
Drinkmonger £25.95 per 75cl bottle. UK importers Rhone to Rioja

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