CÉRVOLES : MOUNTAIN VITICULTURE FOR SINGLE ESTATE WINES
Cervoles Celler recently entered the Korean Wine Challenge and won a few rewards! Before we get into that, allow us to introduce the winery.
Established in 1997, Cérvoles was the first attempt by producer Tomás Cusiné to grow mountain vineyards since his family bought Castell del Remei, a historic estate in Lleida (Catalonia), in 1982. After taking control of the family’s wine interests, Tomás Cusiné currently oversees the group. Cérvoles is part of DO Costers del Segre, whereas the latest acquisition, called Cara Nord, lies in DO Conca de Barberà further south in Tarragona.
Cérvoles and Cara Nord all have high-elevation vineyards stretching across the hillsides of Montañas de Prades, a mountain range which is part of the Cordillera Prelitoral Catalana. This rugged area stands at a crossroad of various Catalan wine producing regions: Les Garriges in DO Costers del Segre, the southern part of DO Conca de Barberá and Montsant and Priorat further south.
Cérvoles extends across 60 hectares of vineyards, 30 of which are owned by Cusiné. They are planted at an elevation of 680 to 750m in La Pobla de Cérvoles. Red grape varieties include Garnacha, Tempranillo, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon plus a little bit Merlot which is gradually being replaced. In terms of white varieties, Chardonnay and particularly Macabeo stand out, with plantings of the latter added lately.
The grapes used for Cérvoles are usually the last to be picked among the group of wineries owned by Cusiné in Montañas de Prades. In this windy area, wines have high alcohol and robust tannins. Soils are mainly silt-loam and clay-loam with various levels of gravel providing good drainage.
Without further ado, allow us to introduce the wines that have won awards at the recent Korean Wine Challenge 2019.
Grape Variety: Macabeu, Chardonnay & Petit Manseng
Straw-yellow with metallic glints and appreciable legs. Intense aromas of tropical fruit, pineapple and white peach, together with notes of white-fleshed fruit, melon. Aeration reveals a hint of yeast from the ageing on lees, as well as notes of hay and hints of citrus. Sweet, voluptuous mouth-feel and unctuous on the palate, with acidity adding freshness. Very long, balanced finish with hints of acidic fruit such as green apple.
Cherry red, medium intensity, with garnet highlights. Abundant, dense legs. Intense, pleasant aromas of over-ripened fruit with hints of wood, particularly smoked and balsamic notes. Aeration reveals predominantly mineral aromas, with hints of aromatic herbs, such as fennel, thyme and rock tea, as well as dried fruits and chocolate. Sweet, unctuous mouth feel, with a great deal of volume, followed by well-balanced acidity and mature tannins. Very long finish with notes of nougat and wild fruits.
This young wine represents Cervoles Celler’s new bet for verticality and purity, no makeup, no masks, just fruit in its utmost expression. A large French oak “Tonneau” of 4.000L slightly shapes its evocative and captivating character. Partially vinified with its whole cluster. Strawberries, blackcurrant and blackberry, citrus jellybeans and deep species cover the whole spectrum of this wine which honours this indige- nous grape variety thanks to the singularity of Cervoles and the mountain viticulture that we practise in altitudes over 700 m.
Grape Variety: Chardonnay 45% and Macabeo 55%
Straw-yellow in colour with metallic and golden glints, crystal-clear with dense legs. Intense and complex aromas, displaying subtle notes from the cask ageing: spices (nutmeg and vanilla), toasted and smoky notes, hints of tropical fruit (ripe pineapple). Aeration reveals aromas of the ageing on lees (yeast), biscuity hints and white-fleshed fruit (apple). Voluptuous mouth-feel, fleshy on the palate, with well-integrated tannins adding volume together with acidity adding freshness. Very long, harmonious finish, with hints of Jijona turrón (a type of almond nougat) and a touch of citrus peel.