2017 Bodega Cooperativa Cristo del Humilladero, Garnacha, “Granito del Cadalso” by Dani Landi & Fernando Garcia, Sierra de Gredos, Vinos de Madrid, Spain.
The Granito de Cadalso is made at the local co-op, Bodega Cooperativa Cristo del Humilladero, which was founded by the vineyard owners and growers back in 1956, it is a historic town cellars in the Sierra de Gredos region, in the high plateau above Madrid, this area is one of the world’s hotspots for delicate Garnacha. The owner of the Co-Op is wine enthusiast Ricardo Moreno, who is a a partner in the now famous Comando G winery, with winemaker Fernando Garcia, which is literally a couple does down the street as well as friends with the talented Daniel Gómez Jiménez Landi, aka Dani Landi, who was maybe the first of this new generation to gain world wide acclaim for the Gredos zone, and Moreno unlisted these two stars to make a few wines to help up the image of the Co-op, an approach that has already paid dividends with critical acclaim and a new distribution deal with Landi and Comando G’s importer, Eric Solomon of European Cellars.
Having had both Comando G and Landi wines, along with my favorites, Alfredo Maestro and 4 Monos, I have been a huge fan of this area for more than a few vintages, so I was excited to finally get a bottle from the Bodega Cooperativa Cristo del Humilladero, which is from mostly organic vines, some of which are between 20 and 70 years old set on sandy, granite soils, hence the name, at about 1,000 feet above sea level with a hybrid continental climate, but with cool night temperatures that really helps these wines retain freshness and vitality in what is pretty arid conditions. Part of the reason the co-op is doing these series is the keep this farmers in cash, so they don’t sell up and convert the land to condos or housing tracks which has threatened about 80% of the vineyard area and putting the regions traditional history at risk.
The 2017 Granite del Cadalso, a beautifully pure and soulful example, was fermented and aged in concrete with a 15-20 day maceration with regular remontage, and it shows all the lovely layers that have set this region apart, giving fresh detail that highlights this vintage as well as the terroir with a medium full palate of red and black fruits, spice and stony elements. The main palate shows macerated cherry, raspberry, strawberry and tangy plum, adding hints of black currant jelly, anise, chalky, but silky tannins, lavender and fresh cut herbs. This non oaked Garnacha is a wonderful gateway wine to this region and a classy and authentic effort, easy to love and stylish enough to surprise a few palates.
($20 Est.) 91 Points, grapelive