Granito Cru Alvarinho
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For nearly two decades, Luis Seabra has been at the center of a cultural shift in Portuguese winemaking, leading a movement of young, independent winemakers making history by reclaiming historical vineyards, grape varieties, and techniques. Seabra is dedicated to proving that fresh, elegant, terroir-driven still wines can be made in the Douro Valley. His fundamental understanding of soil coupled with his philosophy of minimal intervention in the vineyard and winery have launched him into the international eye as a leader of the New Portugal; according to Eric Asimov, he “is now making some of Portugal’s most compelling wines, both white and red.”
Luis Seabra works with old vineyards because he believes that mature vines are more resilient and well-equipped to handle the region’s intense weather; this makes them the best candidates to faithfully communicate special terroirs. When he started his solo project in 2013, he created the “Cru” series of wines, which revolve not around grape varieties, but vineyard sites. In Seabra’s own words: “we did this to show how we can put the place in the bottle.”
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?
Rather than a single vineyard, this is a single soil Alvarinho, intended as a clear expression of terroir and place. Sustainably farmed vines and vinified using only spontaneous fermentation and indigenous yeasts. This way he removes all potential variability other than the soil type as an expression of terroir.
2020 91 WA; 2018 93WS, 92WA; 2017 90WA; 2016 92WA, 90WS; 2015 94 D
100% Alvarinho (Albariño ). Sustainably grown vines planted in 1989. Tended in granite soil at 50-150 m (164-492 ft) elevation. This is a vegan wine.
Raw or roasted oysters, shellfish, grilled whole snapper.
VINIFICATION AND AGING:
The pressing of destemmed and crushed grapes was done with no added sulfur and without maceration. The wine was decanted cold for 48 hours. The fermentation and aging took place in two used, oval vats of 1000 liters and a new oval vat of 2000 liters, all made from Eastern European oak. Fermentation was carried out during 4 months with full malolactic. Total ageing in the barrels took 9 months in the presence of lees without stirring them.
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE:
Vineyards located in Monçao e Melgaço in Vinho Verde, the birthplace of Alvarinho. Vinho Verde is located in the northwest of Portugal. There is a good deal more maritime influence here, lending acidity to the wines. Vines planted exclusively in granite soil at roughly 50-150 m (164-492 ft) elevation.
Brilliant straw. On the nose, high toned and mineral driven aromas of lemon peel, green apple, lemongrass, and seashells. On the palate, impressive weight combined with laser-focused acidity. Incisive flavors of lemon, unripe peach, green apple, green mango are at the core, with focused and pervasive mineral notes.
8437013189828/ 2015: 5600790052002