On Spain's northern coastline you will find
Itsasmendi. They are the leading producer of Txakoli wine and
produce a contemporary style from the native varieties Hondarrabi
Zuri and Hondarrabi Zuri Zerratie, all grown amongst the Biscaya
In touching distance of the Bay of Biscay, the land and the
weather can appear more English than Iberian, an illusion rendered
only more real by the herds of black and white Friesian cows that
populate the landscape. The prevailing onshore wind is the saviour
that protects the vines and fruit from the otherwise inevitable
rot, and allows wine to be made that is full of aromatics, generous
acidity and great structure. The perfect accompaniment to the
ubiquitous shellfish that are the staples of the local cuisine.
Following six years of research, Bodegas Itsasmendi was founded
in 1995 and lies along the windy road to the town of Gernika.
Working with renowned winemaker Ana Martín, the team use their
local knowledge and expertise to produce three distinctive
With only 30ha of vineyards and an average yeild of 7,500 to
8,500 kgs per hectare, this is very small production!
The two native varieties of the area, Hondarrabi Zuri and
Hondarrabi Zuri Zerratie (easier to say than spell!) are perfectly
suited to the local terroir and climate and produce original and
authentic Txacoli wines.
Vines are all planted facing south to ensure maximum exposure to
the sun, which is much needed in this area. With extreme weather
conditions, harvest is much later than in the neighbouring
Always innovating, Itsasmendi were the first in the region to
produce a late harvest wine, Itsasmendi Uretzi, and to introduce
Riesling into the vineyards for their Number 7 wine.