2019 Cerro La Barca Extremadura Tempranillo Vegas Altas
Region: Ribera del Guadiana < Extremadura < Spain
Vineyard/Cellar Stats: Certified organic + biodynamic farming; old vines on clay soils; fermented in stainless steel vats; unfined/unfiltered with no added SO2; 14%; 100 cases
Winemaker: Juan Sojo & Ángel Luis González
Juan Sojo and Ángel Luis González are like brothers from different mothers, having studied oenology together and now making wine together. One has a background in agriculture, the other in science. Both are passionate about organic farming, pioneering such practices in this remote region. In fact, they’re still the only organic wine producers in all of Extremadura (the dramatically beautiful region bordering Portugal, in western Spain). The vineyard, located on the banks of the Guadiana River, has a huge amount of biodiversity, which the guys say makes human intervention almost unnecessary. The region is hot and dry, so they harvest at night to maintain freshness and low ABV.
We've rocked their pet'nat and orange, so we're stoked to meet their plush, juicy Tempranillo, sourced from a range of vineyards just east of Mérida on the banks of the Guadiana River. The proximity to the river creates a special microclimate with humidity that decreases irrigation needs in this hot region, and also helps the fruit maintain freshness (so many reds from these parts taste cooked due to the heat).
So we're loving this fresh style of Tempranillo, called joven (young) that sees no oak, allowing the grape's juicy red fruit (strawberries, raspberries and cherries) to shine. and a touch of licorice. Silky on the palate, this bad boy has a bounce of freshness from the bright acidity that enhances the generous fruit and keeps you coming back for more. You also can't beat the price point. Stock up for BBQ season.