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de Andres Sisters, Spain

A project between sisters, Ruth & Ana de Andres, Garganata del Aguila is produced from selected parcels of high altitude Garnacha, grown on the distinctive decomposed granite soils of the Gredos Mountains (west of Madrid).

Vines scratch out an existence in these once abandoned vineyards, up at 1,007 metres close to the walled town of Avila, dotted amongst huge granite outcrops, with roots sunk deep into the sand-like soils. With a long standing fascination for the wines from this region, it was just a matter of finding the right vineyards and the right people. After speaking to various contacts Ruth & Ana came across a small winery, with 8 partners (the youngest of whom was 70 years old!), who had access to incredible old plots of bush vine Garnacha on these very particular soils. All of the plots are smaller than 1 hectare; yields are super low, and currently they hand-harvest from across 90 different sites in order to produce this wine. The idea was to produce a youthful wine from these old vines; with a focus on purity and an unencumbered expression of the variety and terroir. Ruth describes this as a ‘down-to-earth wine’ ... it’s not over manipulated in the winery and is more commercial and approachable in style than some. Ruth & Ana are now on their fifth vintage and the collaboration is going from strength to strength.

Viticulture

For this project, Ruth & Ana seek out small parcels of old bush vines with otherwise would have remained abandoned and utilising the amazing quality fruit that they yield ... their project has also brought young people back to the winery and secured its future in a small way. Vineyards all less than 1 hectare, low yielding, with all work done by hand, in part due to the inaccessibility of many of the plots.

Winemaking

Short maceration of the grapes, fermentation in concrete with natural yeasts, racked into concrete for 8-10 months; no fining or filtration and bottles with a very low dose of SO2 (40-50ppm) prior to bottling.

HIGHLIGHTS
  • Well priced, commercial style of Gredos Garnacha from this increasingly fashionable DO; more mouthfeel and texture than the softer, more lifted styles often found from this area.
  • Vineyard plots are smaller than 1 hectare; yields are super low, and currently they hand-harvest from across 90 different sites in order to produce this wine.
  • ‘A down-to-earth wine’; fermented in concrete, with natural yeasts, no fining, filtration and only minimal SO2.