Azul y Garanza "Naturaleza Salvaje" Garnacha 2018
Monoculture farming is undoubtedly bad for the planet. Beside the obvious lack of diversity, it strips the soil of nutrients and requires large amounts of water, chemicals, and fossil fuels. This extends to grapevines: large, commercial plots of industrial vineyards harm us and the planet and, simply put, don't make exciting wine.
Compare that, then, to this. The 100-year-old Garnacha vines were discovered growing wild in a desert, lunar landscape in Navarra, northeast Spain, struggling in the raw, infertile soils to produce highly concentrated grapes with a true sense of place and flavor.
In this natural habitat they're dry-farmed with as little intervention as possible, surrounded by a panoply of native insects, birds, wildlife, and desert scrub. They ferment it with native yeasts in clay amphora and large, old barrels, bottled unfiltered. This is raw, postmodern wine at its best, made much as it was for centuries before technology.
In the glass: deep ruby color, with aromas of candied cherry, violets, rosemary, and coriander. Notes of cedar and campfire lead into red licorice, cherry candy, forest floor, and sage. There's so much going on here! With more air, the wine continues to unfold – it doesn't reach its peak until open 2-3 hours, so decant this for maximum pleasure!
This is the bold, innovative new face of Spanish red. It's exciting, totally raw and natural, and delicious!