Serra i Barceló Aucalà Garntatxa Blanca, Terra Alta, Spain, 2018 (750ml)
Rich with some barrel spiciness, the nose has the smell of nutty tannin in fresh-cut white fruit - custard apple, feijoa ... and a touch of earthier spiced quince. The palate is a joyful romp of rich, buoyant fruit wonderfully constrained structurally by extremely neat spice, tannin grip from oak, fine acidity and flashing minerals a-plenty. There's orchard-fruit perfume a-plenty in the back palate with lovely acidity, and a touch of refreshing astringency to close. Such a cleverly constructed (and delicious!) wine.
ABOUT THE WINE
This is very cleverly made, all in the name of retaining natural acid freshness. A form of green harvest takes place a couple of weeks earlier than the bulk of the pick, and this fermentation forms an indelible acid base. Stainless steel fermented (in 3,000 litre foudre) then aged inert for five months (on a library of Aucalà’s historical lees). Cultured with neutral Bayanus yeast, the fermented wine is moved by nitrogen, which is bubbled up from under the lees once every 5 days, a reductive movement of the lees which is protected from oxygen at all times. Stabilised mono-proteins (glycerol) allow bottling without any stabilisation or additions.