April Progress

April 24th, 2024 | Bodega

After spending six months resting on their lees the first wines of 2023 are now being prepared. However, as we still have good stocks of our (fantastic) 2022 Castro Martin Family Estate, the tanks which have been selected for this special wine will not be touched, perhaps for another few months at least.

Although we only make a mono-varietal albariño wine not every tank is identical, there are many variations, usually dependant upon the original source vineyard used to make each tank. For this reason, we always select a number of tanks according to their different attributes – flavours, textures, structure, balance etc.

I always equate this process to cooking, taking a number of ‘ingredients’ and trying to imagine how they might compliment each other when put together, but even more importantly, how they might evolve over time. There is a lot of trial and error involved, based almost entirely on the taste of each sample blend that we try. Once the final mix is decided, it is then down to the ‘simple’ task of moving thousands of litres of wine around the cellar, akin to one huge game of chess!

Of course, these wines need to be racked into clean tanks anyway (to separate the clean wine from their lees), and so by blending at this moment we can actually kill two birds with one stone (and thus minimise the number of times that each tank is moved). In some cases, these wines may never be moved again until they are actually bottled.

To be honest, blending is one of my favourite jobs of the year as there is always a great deal of satisfaction in tasting the ‘finished’ wines (after allowing some days for the individual component wines to marry together completely).

Meanwhile, in the vineyards, it is time to grub up and replant a few vines. These may have come to the end of their working life or perhaps simply started to die off, which sometimes happens. The weather over the last three weeks or so has been must better, with dry, sunny days many of which were tempered a little by cold easterly or northerly winds. Unfortunately, this is set to change in the coming days as yet more rain looms just over the horizon.

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