The famed Cepas Vellas Albariño from Do Ferreiro, one of Spain’s iconic white wines capable of long aging and improvement in bottle, is sourced from a single 1.5ha albariño vineyard in front of the winery in the Salnés Valley, planted in 1785. The historic vines are pergola trained and pruned with the Cazenave-Marcon method. Considered by many to be the apex expression of Rías Baixas albariño, Cepas Vellas now stands with the great white wines of the world. Properly cellared, Cepas Vellas is capable of improving for 10 to 20 years.
Gerardo Méndez of Do Ferreiro was part of the original group of 14 growers who elevated the potential of their region, as he and his father Francisco were integral in forming the original denomination of origin Rías Baixas in 1988. Do Ferreiro was born from incredible raw material and an uncompromising dedication to quality, a legacy that continues today with Gerardo’s son, Manuel, and daughter, Encarna, all working together to craft Do Ferreiro.
Vintage Notes – In 2019, yields were lower than in 2018, and the quality was excellent. Although acidity is higher than usual, it is well integrated with fully developed phenolic ripeness. This situation bodes extremely well for the age-ability of the 2019 vintage, as some of the greatest vintages of Cepas Vellas have elevated acidity. Yields were down in their Salnés valley vineyards 20%, compared to 2018. Following two vintages with higher than average yields, the vines produced less clusters per bud in 2019, naturally lowering yields. The absence of rain during the first 40 days of ripening resulted in lightweight clusters with very little must. The resulting wine has perfect structure from extremely healthy grapes with balanced acidity, fruit, and alcohol. 2019 is an epic vintage for Cepas Vellas, which will reward a decade or more of time in the cellar.
Vinification – Hand-harvested albariño grapes are first destemmed and cold-soaked with the skins for five hours before fermentation. Fermentation with native yeasts from the Cepas Vellas vineyard occurs in temperature-controlled stainless steel tanks followed by 11 months aging on the lees without stirring.