VENTA LA VEGA
ALMANSA - SPAIN
“Is this the world’s best winemaker?” Decanter Magazine highlighting Raúl Pérez, 2019
Raúl Pérez is unquestionably one of the most exciting winemakers in Spain. The tiny amounts of wine he produces under his own name that make it to Australia arrive and disappear very quickly each year. While at home in the Bierzo region of Galicia working principally with Mencia, Raúl is also known for the many projects he is involved in further afield that explore different terrors and grape varieties. These are almost always micro in scale and just as hard to come by as his 'own' wines - normally with prices to match! There is one exception: Venta La Vega - an organic, very high-altitude Garnacha Tintorera vineyard in Almansa. Raúl guides the project as oenologist, with none other than José Ángel Martínez from Envínate in place as winemaker. With two of the leading figures in the radical new winemaking movement in Spain at the helm, expectations should be very high!
The 225 hectares of organic vineyards located at the foothills of the legendary limestone mountains of Almansa known as El Mugrón are the largest single planting of the Garnacha Tintorera variety in Europe. This privileged location has abundant water and excellent soil. An altitude of up to 1200 metres encourages the creation of a distinct, dry natural micro-climate that enables the land to be farmed without using any chemical treatments or additives. The Almansa region itself lies about 100 kilometers inland from Valencia and Alicante. Its extreme continental climate of cold winters and hot summers, combined with the well drained, stony and nutrient- poor soils that are ideal for vines, are perfect for the cultivation of intensely bright and lifted reds.
Venta La Vega ‘Adaras Aldea’ Garnacha-Syrah 2021
Certified organic and exceptionally packaged, this is Raul’s most accessibly priced wine to date. Garnacha with a small addition of Syrah, aged three months in old oak. Vibrant, lifted fruit character and impeccable balance of acid and fruit intensity. Elegant, fresh, new wave Grenache at it’s best.
Venta La Vega ‘Ternario 1’ 2016
Wine Advocate - “The 2016 Ternario 1, a wine of a range of three produced with Garnacha Tintorera grapes, the most planted grape in the zone, but each from different soils. This comes from a 25-year-old trellised and ungrafted plot on clay and limestone soils with limestone mother rock. It fermented with some full clusters in stainless steel and concrete vats with a long maceration (one and a half months). The wine matured in a combination of concrete tanks (30%) and used barriques for ten months. This is the one with a younger and fresher profile and with more fruit character, a more serious version of the Adara Calcáreo, with very good drinkability and freshness. It's juicy and the tannins are quite polished, with the chalky texture of the limestone soils.”
Venta La Vega ‘Ternario 2’ 2016
Wine Advocate - “The second pure Garnacha Tintorera is the 2016 Ternario 2, from a large plot planted ungrafted 20 years ago. It fermented with a long maceration with part of full clusters and matured in used oak barrels for ten months. This is possibly the most classic of the three Ternarios, with a little more influence from the oak but with good freshness. It has some dusty tannins and spicy flavors, a little earthy. It has nice balance and it's easy to drink, but it should be better with food.”