Fedellos do Couto Lomba dos Ares 2014
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Mr. Parker's Wine Advocate touts this vineyard as a mover and a shaker in Ribeira Sacra. We thought we'd grab some to see what all the fuss is about. We chose the Fedellos do Couto Lomba dos Ares because it's such a sweet deal. It's a beautiful mouthful of wine, with flowers and fruit and a determinedly earthy, hearty side. Bring out the happy in your diners with pastrami sliders on rye buns and a generous schmear of whole grain mustard. Have them take a sip of this Lomba dos Ares to maximize that very same happy. Crisp duck confit legs with a pickled raisin sauce works beautifully with the acid in the wine, so makes a fine entree. Garlicky sausages over a warm lentil salad tossed with a Dijon vinaigrette are another delicious pairing. Do the cross-cultural thing with a homemade pizza topped with pepperoni, sopresatta and pancetta. You won't be able to stop at one slice - guaranteed!
Robert Parker, Jr.'s Wine Advocate: "The 2014 Lomba dos Ares is a red field blend from a plot of old vines containing mainly Mencía, Garnacha Tintorera, Negreda, Grao Negro, Merenzao (also known as Bastardo or Bastarda, and of course Trousseau!), Caíño and Aramón, from a hilltop in the Bibei Valley at 700 meters altitude not that far from Valdeorras. The vines are over 60-years-old, head-pruned and planted at an altitude of 450 to 650 meters. The standard modus operandi is to ferment the full clusters with indigenous yeasts in plastic bins and to mature the wine in used French oak barrels of different sizes, 300 and 500 liters. This was quite reductive when I tasted it and it took longer than the Cortezada to open up, but it finally showed its nuances and depth, with a similar profile, floral and with acid berries, some curry and lots of flinty aromas - a little meatier. The palate shows the sharpness and precision of the 2014s, with great focus, purity and acidity. This is different to Cortezada, but again at similar quality level. 4,400 bottles.
The base of the project are the vineyards belonging to the Pazo do Couto, an ancient manor dating to the 12th century belonging to the Taboada family. The vineyards are on decomposed granite and schist soils at the southern and eastern end of the Ribeira Sacra, in the sub-zones of Ribeiras do Sil and Quiroga-Bibei. They also rent some vineyards and buy grapes from local growers. Fedellos do Couto is one of the most exciting new names in Ribeira Sacra.
This has to be one of the more exciting new projects in Ribeira Sacra and the whole of Galicia, with wines that are often a real bargain.
||750ml, cool cork with wax seal
|Varietal||Mencia, Merenzao, Mouraton, Caiño Tinto
|Aging||in 500L demi-muids of neutral French oak
|Region||Ribeira Sacra, Galicia, Spain
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