Finca Nueva Tempranillo Crianza 2015
Fermented and aged in French oak barrels
Bright red cherry in color with soft and elegant aromas found on the nose, including cassis, Bing cherry, mixed-berry jam, milk chocolate and sweet spice. On the palate, the wine mimics the nose and is well-balanced with perfectly integrated tannins and a nice finish.
Located 2.5 hours north of Madrid near the village of Navarrete in Rioja Alta, the vines that go into making Finca Nueva’s Crianza are on average 10–35 years old and strategically planted in a north-northeast-facing direction. Containing a climate that is influenced by the nearby Atlantic Ocean, Rioja Alta is known for prolonged periods of maturation, creating ideal growing conditions for Tempranillo, an early-ripening varietal. Comprising of 50% estate-grown fruit, the vines are either trellised or head-pruned and always planted close together, increasing nutrient competition. Rioja Alta’s unique terroir comprises a mixture of chalky, calcium-rich and ferrous-clay, to rocky and alluvial soils. The 39 acres of vineyards controlled by Miguel Ángel de Gregorio for production at Finca Nueva, are organically fertilized and farmed sustainably.
During harvest, clusters are hand-picked and manually sorted. Grapes are destemmed and left uncrushed before being placed in stainless steel tanks for a cold, prefermentary maceration at 41°F, over 6 days. After this time, fermentation with native yeasts occurs in stainless steel tanks at 82°F, over 10 days. Daily manual pump-overs take place three times a day, for a total skin maceration of 16 days. The finished wine is drained from tank using gravity and then pressed using a traditional vertical press. Malolactic fermentation is performed in tank and the resulting wine is aged for 12 months in French and Amercian oak barrels, which are racked every 4 months. After oak aging, the wine is left un-fined before it is aged extensively in bottle in underground metal cages. While a “Crianza” must only be aged for 2 years, winemaker Miguel Ángel prefers to age his wines several years longer, making them soft on the palate and ready to consume when released.
The 2014 began with exceptionally cold and rainy weather, which fully replenished the region’s important hydric reserves. Below average temperatures lasted through mid-April, and bud break occurred a bit later, during third week of the month. The end of April and May saw warm and sunny days, with abundant rainfall. Flowering took place mid-June with warm, dry weather. July began with cool days and some rain, while the rest of summer was dry and mild. Veraison began the second week of August, allowing the vines to achieve optimal maturation, similar to that found in the very best vintages. The beginning of September was warm with frequent rainstorms, but thankfully the dry heat produced in mid-September, through the first week of October, caused any sign of Botrytis to subside. Harvest began October 8th with cool and clear weather.