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Barrialto, Palomino Fino, Vino Blanco "Azacanes" Andalucía, Spain 2019

Barrialto, Palomino Fino, Vino Blanco "Azacanes" Andalucía, Spain 2019

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100% Palomino Fino

Barrialto produces natural and transparent terruño-driven white wines from old-vine palomino grapes without fortification from the Jerez region in a micro-winery located in a converted historic tavern in Sanlúcar’s Barrio Alto sub-zone. The most groundbreaking aspect of the vision for Barrialto is winemaker Rafa Rodríguez’s dedication to exploring and exalting the region’s historic terroir through his organically-farmed vineyards.

Barrialto Azacanes is a very small production (one barrel), skin-contact orange wine made from bush-trained palomino grapes grown in Pago Maína, near Sanlúcar, with albariza barajuela soil. Rafa says that the albariza barajuela lends a dry minerality and herbal salinity. Azacanes is bottled from a single ex-Manzanilla 1000L butt. Rafa does not use excessive punch-downs; rather, he allows the palomino grape skins to rest gently on the wine, lending a radiant copper hue imbued with elegance and balance.

Each wine Rafa produces is a unique snapshot of a place, time, and soil type in his vineyards in the Jerez region. As a result, the production of these authentic treasures is in the hundreds of bottles, and they are exceptionally limited, coming to the US market in tiny allocations.

Hand-harvested palomino grapes are destemmed, crushed, and placed into stainless steel tanks where the juice is left to macerate and spontaneously ferment with native yeasts on the skins for four months with very minimal punch-downs. After fermentation and four months of skin contact, the grapes are pressed, and the wine is transferred to rest in a 1000L ex-Manzanilla (Gaspar Florido) cask for 18 months. The wine does not undergo malolactic fermentation. It is then transferred to a stainless steel tank and lightly fined with bentonite and paper filtration for a further six months to rest before bottling.

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