Vintage: 2018

VintageProduct CodeFormatClosureAvailability
2018BF202B186 x 75Natural CorkAvailable
Vegetarian
Vegan
Sustainable
Producer

Cuevas de Arom is a new project led by friends Fernando Mora MW and Mario López, based in Calatayud. The project’s aim is to redefine the style of the region and produce an elegant and fresh expression of Garnacha. In their search for Spain’s finest and forgotten plantings of Garnacha, the project became a joint venture with Bodegas San Alejandro, a unique cooperative which champions the conservation of old vines, and the development of organic and sustainable viticulture. The cooperative still owns some of the oldest and highest vineyards in the region planted on precipitous slopes, offering Cuevas de Arom access to the best Garnacha fruit.

The region of Calatayud is located far inland, south of Zaragoza in Aragon. Here the climate is warm and continental with very low rainfall. Fernando was determined to unlock the potential of the region’s oldest Garnacha vineyards, which are located on high-altitude plateaus at 600 to 1,000 metres above sea level. This altitude, combined with the vineyards’ northerly aspect, moderates the region’s warm climate and provides a wide diurnal range for perfectly paced slow ripening to develop complex aromatics and preserve the grapes’ fresh acidity. Fernando has spent years uncovering old, dry farmed bush vines planted on friable Precambrian slate and quartzite. These rocky, free-draining soils, combined with the vines’ age, produce very low yields and naturally control vigour, imparting a signature depth and intensity in the wines. Balance is integral to Fernando’s wines with naturally high acidity tempering the wine’s vivid fruit profile. The parcels are farmed using sustainable and organic practices, with some certified organic.

The fruit is all harvested by hand, using small crates before manual sorting in the cellar and foot treading. Wooden vats and concrete tanks are used for fermentation, which lasts about one month. Whole bunch is at the centre of Fernando’s winemaking philosophy, with the inclusion of stems, to produce a signature freshness and perfume in the wines. Fernando and Mario use only manual punch downs, resulting in delicate, fine-grained tannins. They select concrete, old wood and clay vessels for ageing to highlight the purity of Garnacha and to preserve the wines’ supple texture.

‘Altas Parcelas’ (previously known as ‘AROM’) is sourced from a selection of vineyards at 600 to 800 metres above sea level on quartz and slate soils. The grapes are wild yeast fermented with 30% whole bunches and the wine is aged for 12 months in concrete. It offers a superbly balanced expression of Garnacha with bright and fragrant aromas of blackcurrant, white pepper and thyme, supported by firm tannins and beautiful freshness, quite unlike a traditional Spanish Garnacha. ‘As Ladieras’ is an expression from the local Aragonese dialect meaning ‘slopes’. The fruit for this wine is sourced from a single vineyard, on a steep north facing slope. Located at 850 metres above sea level on Precambrian slate soils, Fernando describes this site as his ‘Premier Cru’. The grapes are 100% whole bunch fermented and the wine is aged for 10 months in a combination of concrete and 500 litre old barrels. It has a brighter, more red-fruit profile than the Arom, with lifted notes of red cherry and wild herbs such as bay, rosemary and lavender. Light on its feet, it deftly balances serious concentration with juicy acidity.

Vineyards

The 30-60 year old Garnacha vines are grown on pre-Cambian slate and quartzite soils across 8.5 hectares of vineyard on north-facing slopes at 600m altitude. The vineyards are undergoing conversion to organic viticulture. ‘As Ladieras’ is an expression from the local Aragonese dialect meaning ‘slopes’. Fernando considers this to be his 'Premier Cru' vineyard.

Vintage

2018 was a year characterised by high rainfall, above average for the past 10 years.The budding period began as usual but a wet spring and a cold April held back the cycle, resulting in the grapes maturing later than normal. The quality of the grapes, however, was excellent thanks to this slower ripening and low yields. The grapes for As Ladieras were hand-harvested on 27th September. The wines from 2018 display superb acidity and firm tannins.

Vinification

The grapes were fermented using indigenous yeasts in open-top cement tanks with 100% whole bunch included. Fermentation lasted 35 days with daily, manual pump-overs. The wine was aged in a combination of concrete eggs and 500l oak barrels for 10 months before bottling.

Tasting Notes & Technical Details

As Ladieras has a bright red-fruit profile, with lifted notes of red cherry and wild herbs such as bay, rosemary and lavender. Light on its feet, it deftly balances serious concentration with juicy acidity.

Alcohol (ABV)

13.5%

Acidity

6.23 g/l

Residual Sugar

3 g/l

pH

3.45

Other wines from this producer

Producer
Wine
Product Code
Features
Style
Cuevas de Arom`Altas Parcelas` Calatayud GarnachaBF201
Vegetarian
Vegan
Practising Organic
R
Red
Factsheet