Viña Elena, Familia Pacheco Barrica, DO Jumilla, Spain, 2018
Widely considered to be one of the best wineries in Jumilla, Viña Elena is very much a family affair with Elena Pacheco at the helm supported ably by her mother, sisters and children.
Viña Elena sits directly inland from the Costa Blanca and that venerable holiday destination, Benidorm. Safe to say, it is hot in this south east corner of Spain and Elena is fascinated by Monastrell and how she can create ever more elegant and delicate incarnations of it, despite the intensity of the sun. From their 17 hectares of organically cultivated vines set within the semi-arid, hilly landscape, Elena experiments with the differing soil types to see how Monastrell will react and how she can express the personality of the grape. The differing terroir, organic practices and the lack of oak influence all goes to create fascinating wines of greater elegance, fruit and delicacy than the heat of this sun worshippers' land would have you expect.
The Monastrell comes from dry-farmed, gobelet-trained, spur-pruned, hand harvested vines planted on limestone soils, where the vines are around 30-40 years old. There is a combination of different plots located in different sub-zones at altitudes range between 380-680m a.s.l. Low density planted. Syrah & Cabernet are from trellised vines which are drip irrigated. This plot is located at 550m a.s.l. in the “Omblancas” valley, 7 km north-west from Jumilla Town. Soils are sandy clay and the high density cane pruned vines planted in 2004. Garnacha Tintorera is sometimes added to the blend, this comes from a dry-farmed, gobelet-trained, spur-pruned plot sited on clay soils in the centre of the Marin valley, which is harvested by hand. This high density plot was planted in 2012 at an altitude of 360m a.s.l.
A traditional fermentation in stainless steel vat, temperature controlled at 24º C for 8 days. Native yeast, malolactic fermentation in vat and then 6 months in 300 L. French oak barrels. New oak, second-fill and third-fill barrels are combine to make a wine with elegant aromas and flavours of vanilla and cacao without overwhelming the fruit of the grape varieties.
% wine oaked: 100
% new oak: None
Aromas of ripe red fruits and cherry with subtle hints of spice. Very expressive on the palate. Elegant first impression of freshness, followed by the fruitiness and maturity of the Monastrell. Soft notes well integrated toast, caramel, toffee. It is fresh, lively, balanced and harmonious with a long aftertaste.
Delicious with tapas, roast meats, stews and cheese.
Cabernet Sauvignon 25%
12 x 75cl