Castro Ventosa in Bierzo is a hidden gem founded by the Perez family in 1752, it has been family-run ever since, with Raul Perez remaining responsible for all the winemaking.
Raul Perez is one of Spain’s most renowned winemakers, rated 5 out of 5 stars by Robert Parker who is a massive fan: “These are brilliant, artisanal, handcrafted wines that words simply cannot begin to describe”. Expertly combining biodynamic practices, minimal interaction with the vineyard and fruit from ancient vines, Perez produces “tiny quantities of outrageously good wine” from obscure wine regions such as Bierzo. Wine Advocate’s, Luiz Gutierrez, called Raul Perez a “superstar”, claiming “2014 has to be one of the finest vintages in recent times”, with very floral, aromatic and elegant wines”.
The vineyards are planted on quartz and slate soils, producing Mencia wines of balance and freshness. The grapes are always sourced from the south-facing vineyard in the Villegas zone of the village of Valtuille de Abajo, where the soils have a sandy texture and provide for fine, elegant wines. Floral characteristics combine with earthy, notes of cypress, smoked meat and a Rhone-like twist. The wine is cherry red in colour with violet tones. The nose is complex, delivering mineral notes and aromas of ripe red fruit, along with a touch of fresh grass and elegant spicy notes. The palate is complex and well-balanced with ripe tannins; features that have led to 96 Parker points for this vintage.
Food matches: Pair with charcuterie, mushroom risotto or Monterey Jack cheese.
Serves at: 14-16°C