This summer has been a good one. Lots of relax time but also lots of work. Now that we are back, we need to catch up with everything we have done and share all our experiences with you.
Our pal Manuel informed us that he would do his best and recommend us a Spanish winery down in the south where we normally spent our summer holidays. He did also tell us that he would recommend a nice restaurant where we had a real good meal. He didn’t lie us. He organized us a visit to a winery in Ronda (Málaga) located in an old sixteenth-century monastery.
Ronda is situated on a plateau known as Ronda Depression, a plateau cut by deep pit dug by Guadalevìn with outstanding views to Sierra de Grazalema and a valley where the vineyards of the wineries in the region occupy much of it. Descalzos Viejos is one of them. And it is the one Manuel (one of the greatest sommeliers in Spain) recommends and organized us. Ronda has a rich historical past with very long tradition in winemaking.
Flavio, architect and author of the old convent’s rebuilding into a modern winery with a limited production, respectful with the environment (this year they have introduced molecular viticulture) and elaborated with passion and dedication, was waiting outside the main entrance to show us their facilities and present us their wines as well as some other surprises he had for us.
Upon entering the winery you can find that thing that makes this winery different: the stainless steel tanks room is decorated with original sixteenth-century-frescoes in the wall that Flavio, Paco and Vicente keep and look after. In this same room they also keep some French oak barrels (85% of their barrels are French).
After this great experience we visit the backyard of the winery where they have a kitchen garden and a pool with a beautiful terrace from where you can see part of the town, Sierra de Grazalema and the winery’s vineyards situated 650 metres above sea level (the winery’s around 730 metres above sea level).
As Flavio told us, in Málaga there are no native grape varieties so each winemaker does whatever they want and use their favourite grapes. In the A.O. (Apellation of Origin=Denominación de Origen) not only we have some superb sweet wines, we can also find some wonderful and excellent, full-bodied, well-balanced, powerful, austere red (and dry white) wines faithful reflection of its terroir with a painstaking elaboration. Each winemaker does its whim, and from their passion they can take the best of each vine.
It is the case of our friends from Descalzos Viejos. We had the chance to taste some of their red wines and even some “test” wines. All of them were spectacular well-done and have a promising future.
Here are some of our tasting notes from this malagueño wines. Delicious ones you should not miss!
Descalzos Viejos 2010. Garnacha, Syrah y Merlot.
Red cherry colour with a slight salmon coloured border.
In the nose attacks with licorice, hay, herbaceous and mentholated notes.
In the mouth is fresh, balanced, and balsamic with licorice notes, a polished tannin, and nice acidity. Very tasty.
“Test of Syrah”
In the nose attacks with intense chocolate notes. Slightly spicy with good acidity on the palate. Powerful but lightweight wine.
“Test of Graciano”
In the mouth is powerfull with nice acidity, well finished, sweet with a nice hint of barrel.
Descalzos Viejos 2007.
In the nose attacks with sweet wine notes, coffee, toffee, caramel and slight notes of field and hay. Wheat, herbaceous, chocolate and tobacco notes.
In the palate is creamy, fresh, spicy, sweet, tasty and toasted. Long aftertaste with tobacco and caramel notes. Plain delicious.
Note: they also have a Chardonnay White wine but it was sold out so hopefully we are more lucky next time we visit them.
We leave the winery with a joyfully feeling of what we had experienced that morning. Not only we met Flavio and some other wine lovers but also we did discover an extraordinary Spanish winery that will add to the list of our favourite wine places.
Have you ever taste a wine from Ronda? Which one would you recommend us? Share here with us! Thank you.