According to Ricardo J. Palacios, 2017 has been a year of extremes and surprises. Such extremes included low rainfall and summer drought with high temperatures resulting in an unusually early harvest. On the other extreme was a late frost on April 27 that destroyed crops in the Bierzo Valley, including part of the harvest set aside for the regional wine of Pétalos del Bierzo. Adding to this was a hailstorm that hit a few weeks later on May 9 that devastated the area of Moncerbal, destroying the harvest there. Ricardo has been pleasantly surprised at how such a dry vintage with extreme temperatures has translated into balanced, elegant wines with a refined quality he hasn’t seen in their wines.
Las Lamas is another privileged area in the town of Corullón; the soil has more clay than its companion along the ravine. This year it expresses fruitier and less floral tones than Moncerbal. The texture on the palate is rounder and has an endless finish, with the acidity that this Atlantic vintage is known for.
The 2015 vintage was characterised by low rainfall. The lack of water throughout the year brought the vegetative cycle of the vine forward and it was not until days before the harvest that it started to rain considerably. This caused the grape to hydrate and lead to a somewhat fresher vintage than what it initially seemed. The continental character that this vintage looked like it was going to have was mitigated by the rain before the harvest, balancing the phenolic ripeness, qualifying the vintage as excellent. The wines of this vintage have an excellent balance between structure, acidity and texture in the mouth. A vintage that can age perfectly.
The 2014 vintage was characterised by a marked Atlantic climate. The rains and the cold in autumn prevailed, leading to a somewhat warmer than usual winter. Spring started mildly, with a two-week delay in budding and the rains were sporadic, with a total water accumulation of 1,000 mm that gives the vintage its Atlantic character. In July and August, temperatures rose and rainfall was scarce, leaving the grapes to ripen in an excellent way and giving the vintage a little more structure. At the end of August, they suffered high temperatures, and in September, the traditional rains made the harvest quite difficult. The wines of this vintage are characterised by their great complexity. A wine with an Atlantic and fresh character and a structure provided by the warmer end of cycle. Wines with a long life ahead.
The 2013 vintage was characterised by the influence of the Atlantic climate. Autumn and winter were the typical ones of El Bierzo, with abundant rainfall and low temperatures. Spring came in the same way, with some hail that destroyed crops in some places and lead to the delay in flowering. Summer did not make much of an appearance either, with low temperatures, ripening and the growth cycle were quite slow. The harvest date was delayed by 3 weeks.The wines of this vintage are characterised by a thin profile. The Atlantic climate left its mark on these lighter wines with a marked acidity. Ready to be stored.