New Releases from Alfredo Maestro
by Christopher Barnes
The affable iconoclast Alfredo Maestro started making wine in the late 1990’s when he planted his first vineyard Almate on the Rio Duraton near his native town of Peñafiel in the Ribera del Duero. From the beginning he set out to farm his vineyard organically. In the cellar, Alfredo was teaching himself enology from a book, using every winemaking trick to make a “correct” Ribera del Duero wine: yeasts, acid, enzymes, tannins, color-enhancers, etc. In the early 2000’s Alfredo had a revelation. He started questioning as to why, as an organic farmer, was he using chemicals to make the finished wine. He began eliminating exogenous products and, in 2003, began making wine without any additives, including sulfur. Over the past few years, he has been searching out abandoned or neglected vineyards around the Ribera del Duero and Madrid to convert to organic farming. Gradually, Alfredo has increased production, and now has 9 hectares and two small bodegas, one located in his native Peñafiel in the Ribera del Duero, and the other in the Navalcarnero area, southwest of Madrid. He has emerged as one of the most lauded and dynamic natural winemakers in all of Spain. We at JPS feel extremely honored to represent The Magician in the Duero, Alfredo Maestro, in the U.S.A. His wines are rich, pure, bright, and show everything there is to like about Duero and Madrid wines, minus the fake oak-addled spoof-tactics that have dominated the wine-styles in these two regions.
Alfredo Maestro Viña Almate 2011 75% of this cuvee comes from 80+ year old Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) vines from the Valtiendas area, just south of the Ribera del Duero, grown on river stones over clay soils at 1,000 meters altitude. 25% of the cuvee is from young Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) vines planted on sand and alluvial deposits over clay on the River Duraton at 700 meters. 30% whole cluster, fermented with wild yeasts in vat, and raised for 4 months in used French oak. 10,000 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro Castrillo de Duero 2010 From a single vineyard, called La Ladera, of 70 year old Tinto Fino vines grown on clay-loam soils at 1050 meters elevation in the municipality of Burgos, Ribera del Duero. 20% whole cluster fermented with wild yeasts in vat, and raised for 12 months in used French oak. 3,600 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro La Olmera 2010 From a single namesake vineyard of 30 year old Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) vines on a clay calcareous slope at 800 meters elevation in the Bocos del Duero, Ribera del Duero. Destemmed, wild yeast fermented in vat, with long maceration (20-30 days), and raised for 1 year in old French oak. 600 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro La Guindalera 2010 Grown on the same slope just a stones throw from La Olmera, the soils are a bit more clay, and the vines are 15 years old. Vinified and aged the same way as Olmera. 600 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro Terruños de Castilla 2010 From two vineyards, Olmera and Guindalera, of 15 to 30 year old Tinto Fino (Tempranillo) vines grown on calcareous clay soils at 800 meters in the Bocos del Duero, Ribera del Duero. Destemmed, fermented with wild yeasts in vat, and raised in older French oak for 12 months. 600 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro Lovamor Albillo 2011 From 100-120 year old vines grown on clay-limestone at 800 to 1100 meters elevation. 6 days skin contact, fermented and aged in small steel vats with nothing added or taken away.400 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro Amanda Rosado 2011 From a single vineyard, called El Cuchillejo, of 60 year old Garnacha Tintorera vines grown on clay calcareous soils at 930 meters elevation in the Olmos de Duero valley, Ribera del Duero. 3-5 hours skin contact, fermented in small stainless steel vats, and bottled early with nothing added and nothing taken away. 500 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro La Viñuela 2010 From a single vineyard of 70 year old Garnacha and Tempranillo vines, 50/50, grown at 900 meters elevation in the Navalcarnero area of Vinos de Madrid. The vineyard has been farmed organically since 2008. Destemmed, fermented in small stainless steel vats, and raised for one year in 2nd year French oak. 500 bottles produced.
Alfredo Maestro A Dos Tiempos 2011 From a single vineyard of 30 year old Tempranillo and Garnacha vines grown on sand and clay at 730 meters elevation in the Navalcarnero area of Vinos de Madrid. The name A Dos Tiempos, “at two times”, comes from the fact the vineyard was harvested twice, three weeks apart. Destemmed, fermented with wild yeasts in vat, and raised for 5 months in used French oak. 3,000 bottles produced
Alfredo Maestro Garnacha 2010 From 100 year old vines grown on clay-calcareous soils at 725 meters elevation in the town of Peñafiel, Ribera del Duero. Destemmed, fermented with wild yeasts in small stainless steel vat, and raised for 12 months in used French oak. 287 bottles produced.
Alfredo Maestro La Cosa 2011 Eiswein made from Tempranillo grapes that were harvested on December 31st.