2/27/2013

Pago de Valdoneje 2011

Producer: Vinos Valtuille
Wine Name: Pago de Valdoneje Joven
Type: Red
Wine Region/ Appellation Bierzo
Vintage: 2011
Grape varieties: 100% Mencía
Alcohol: 13,5 %
Guide Price: 8 €

Our Rating: +++++ (5)

Here is the 4th Spanish Wine under 10 Euros according to our Ranking.

About the area

Bierzo is a Spanish Denominación de Origen for wines located in the northwest of the León province. The area is about 3,000 km² and has 23 municipalities.

The Romans brought agriculture to the area, introduced new crops including the Vitis vinifera vines, and new technologies such as the Roman plough. However, the greatest expansion of viticulture in the area was due to the growth monasteries in the area during the Middle Ages, specifically the Cistercians.

The Bierzo DO has a special microclimate which is beneficial for viticulture. On one hand it has a similar climate to neighbouring Galicia in regards to humidity and rainfall, and on the other hand shares parts of the hot, dry climate of the Mediterranean coast.

The average annual rainfall is just over 700 mm, and the vines receive about 2,200 hours of sunshine per year. Soils in the mountains consist of a mixture of fine elements, quartz and slate. Vineyards are planted mainly on humid, dark soils which are slightly acidic and low in carbonates. 

About the wine

Valtuille Wines has 12 hectares of old vineyards, 90 years old on average, and it stretches along Valtuille de Abajo, in the municipality of Villafranca del Bierzo. This is the heart of the Santiago Pilgrimage Route (El Camino de Santiago). These are vines, where -as in the Ribeira Sacra in Galicia- the Mencia variety is the queen. Vines are located on clay slopes that lead to a balanced ripening. The vineyard is arranged in narrow planting small plots with glass pruning, which requires manual labour.
                  
Grapes for this young wine come from 80 years old vines planted on clay soil, with sand and iron. They are harvested by hand during the last days of September and the beginning of October. The must is then fermented in stainless steel tanks.

Tasting

Deep red hue with a purple-blue rim.

Lovely pure cherry fruit on the nose, marmalade, violet sweets and chilli. Charcoal with honey notes and fresh grass. The savoury, firm palate shows good acidity. Well balanced. Strong and square tannins. Elegant bitterness. The finish is fruity and tasty.

Perfect to drink now or in a couple of years. Will be great with trout and bacon or with barbecued vegetables.