Elefante Primero Tempranillo (12pk)
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Region: Manchuela -Castilla La Mancha
Soil: Limestone / Marl / Sandstone
Elevation: 510 - 610m
Age: 25 - 30 years
Pruning: Un-trellised “Gobelet” bush vines
Grape Variety: 92% Tempranillo 8% Garnacha
Winemaker: Javier Murua
Pack Size: 12 Bottle Pack
Castilla La Mancha: The vast, high and dry plains of Castilla la Mancha comprise over 50% of Spain’s vineyards. The ancient soils and high altitude ensures the richly flavoured fruit maintains structure and tannin. Vineyards planted on the slopes of mountain ranges in the north and north east add a degree of elegance to the wines.
Winemaking: Totally de-stemmed with a short cold soak before a long, cool fermentation with daily pump - overs to achieve optimum fruit and colour. The core of the blend was aged in stainless steel before six months maturation in seasoned French and American oak. A component of up to twenty percent Rioja Tempranillo aged in French oak is added to the blend three months before bottling.
2018 Vintage: 2018 was one of the biggest yields of the last decade ensuring all vignerons of the region were happy after a lack lustre 2017. Stylistically it was a good and ‘classic’ year closer to the vintages of decades ago with medium alcohol at around 13%. Harvest was later but with good acidity and excellent aromas. Harvest was prolonged due to wetter conditions earlier in the year delaying flowering and fruit set and the lower alcohols are a result of higher yields and a dry summer. The arid conditions slowed down the production of sugar in the berries.
Tasting Note: A lovely rendition of Rioja on the nose fragrant with sweet spice and pepper. The palate is bright and expressive with a burst of mouth-filling ripe berry flavours. Textbook varietal flavours of cherry cola and smoked spice flood the palate before supple tannins and subtle oak provide definition to the impressively long finish. Pair with meat-based paella with plenty of smoked paprika.