2019 Telmo Rodriguez Falcoeira Branco
The Telmo Rodríguez Falcoeira Branco is a great white wine from the new vineyards they had planted in the Falcoeira, one of the most famous places in Valdeorras that were lost. The 2019 Falcoeira Branco was produced with grapes from a 0.45 hectare vine of the lower terraces on granite soils. It is a blend of Godello, Doña Branca, Palomino and other grapes that reached 13.5% alcohol and maintained a pH of 3.29 after fermentation and aging in 225 and 500 liter oak barrels for 10 months. This wine used to contribute to the Branco de Santa Cruz, but always had a distinct personality; and in 2019 Telmo found it (only) good enough to be bottled separately. It has a complex but subtle nose, with very good depth, very structured and with a stronger salty note in the aftertaste. It is elegantly nuanced, classic, more in the style of a Meursault, with granite minerality. Only 951 bottles have been bottled and with its debut it gets 95/100 Parker & 96/100 Suckling.
GOOD FACT: The wine is stored in our conditioned Wine Warehouse and if you come to pick up the wine you will also receive a nice discount. We are almost next to the national road with plenty of parking space. Click here for address
Winemaker Telmo Rodriguez is labeled as one of the young lions of the Spanish wine industry. He studied at the University of Bordeaux and later in the Rhône with the famous August Clape. He was the winemaker of La Granja Senora De Remelluri, his father's bodega in Rioja. He left there to become what some would call a flying winemaker. However, Telmo prefers to call itself a 'driving winemaker'. he lives in Madrid and drives his car to the areas where he makes wine. In a short time his wines have found a place on the international playing field. One example: in Tom Stevenson's Wine Report 2008, Telmo is included among the top 10 producers from Spain. We once again spoke extensively with Telmo Rodriguez. That is always a pleasure. If you sit down with him you always learn something or he gives food for thought. What makes this 'conscience of the Spanish wine world' so special? When Telmo completed his studies in Bordeaux and then had internships with people like Chave (Hermitage), Clape (Cornas) and Dürrbach (Trévallon) he came back to Spain. There he saw other Spaniards who had studied in France bringing French grape varieties and customs to Spain. For example, there was more and more wire guidance, while the Spanish system had always been free-standing sticks. Telmo concluded that he wanted to focus on the old qualities of Spain such as freestanding sticks, indigenous grape varieties and field blends. In addition, he was the first in Spain to introduce modern labels and he opposes the rigid Spanish wine laws.
Free standing sticks
Spain used to be a country of bush vines: the sticks were so far apart per area and per vineyard that they could each get enough water. If you place your sticks far apart with wire articulation, the stick will grow far and become much too large. With wire articulation, you therefore need many more sticks per hectare. However, the problem is that there is not enough water for this and you therefore have to irrigate, in areas that often already suffer from a shortage of water. In addition, the grapes hang more in the shade with free-standing sticks, which gives less chance of 'burning' and leads to less stewed fruit and fresher acids. The only downside to free-standing canes is that more manual work is involved in vineyard management and harvesting. Telmo works almost exclusively with bush vines.
Native grape varieties
It was clear to Telmo that there are so many good indigenous varieties in Spain that importing 'the big five' (Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Cabernet and Syrah) from France was not necessary at all. He was one of the first to produce good Rueda from Verdejo and Viura, he embraced Mencia and Godello in Valdeorras, Monastrell in Alicante, Moscatel in Malaga, Garnacha in Cebreros…. In the mid-1990s he was still considered crazy with this philosophy, but now everyone is following him.
There used to be many vineyards in Spain with various grape varieties mixed together, also called 'field blends'. It is often argued against field blends that the varieties (that are picked together) are not all ripe at the same time. It speaks for the fact that diversity and disease resistance increase and that it promotes complexity. Telmo now has two vineyards with field blends in production. In Rioja he makes it Las Beatas (named after the vineyard, first vintage awarded with 97 points by Parker) and in Valdeorras Las Caborcas. Beautiful, original wines!
Spanish wine laws
Telmo was the first to remove the word Reserva from a Rioja in 1995. In his words: 'I ask my wines how long they want to stay in the wood'. One year grapes can easily handle a 12-month aging in wood, but not in another year. There was consternation about Las Beatas: the Consecho initially did not want to approve the wine made with a field blend as Rioja… while there was a time when all Rioja was made that way! Consecho did not push this to the extreme and ultimately fortunate for them, given the enormously high international appreciation.
|Type of Wine||Red|
|Grape||Dona Blanca, Godello, Palomino|
|Drinking as of||2022|
|James Suckling rating||96|
|Tasting Profiles||Dry, Fresh, Fruity, Mineral, Tense, White fruit|
|Drink moments||Borrelen, Cadeau!, Met vrienden, Summer party, Terras, Voor alledag|