The 'natural' wine movement has its roots steeped deeply into tradition, but often has to embrace non-traditional elements to be successful. The goal is to make wines with as little modern technology or intervention as possible -organic/Biodynamic practices, using native yeasts for fermentation, 'hands off' aging and bottling techniques-in the hopes of capturing more unique and distinctive local characters of the past. The process is risky (as is finding a market to sell it to), so wine makers aren't often going to use the most expensive grapes coming from the most famous high dollar vineyards. Producers all over the world are finding their raw material in the forgotten grapes, overlooked vineyards or excess juice worthy of experimenting outside the box. Rafael Tiraldo spent much of his early career as a winemaking consultant for other more traditional producers, while all the time creating his own unique vision on a remote property in the Andes foothills near Lago Colbun. Many of his eccentric ideas then (even planting some vineyards in a labyrinth pattern) are now central to the Natural wine movement, and his vision brings not only high quality wines but also exceptional value for the style.
With a completely unique blend consisting of Riesling, Chardonnay, and Torontel (Torrontes in Argentina), you would think the resulting wine would smell more fruity and tropical, but there is just an initial lime and white flower pop at the start. The majority of the nose is zesty and vibrant citrus with an underlying salinity, as well as a cooling minty streak. On the palate the more pronounced flavors of the natural wine style show through, full of bracing citrus peel, refreshingly subtle white fruits, almost bracing in its acidity but the roundness in the texture from the lees aging gives the acidity something to hold onto. It's bold but not shrill, probably at its best with foods or salads with some vinegar or pickles in them. Most importantly it delivers great character and value for the style of wine it's trying to be, which is tough to find.
The Best of the Best.
We offering free tastings on these wines in the store every Thursday and Friday, and a 10% discount off the retail price through the duration of the day. Come on by and give them a try!