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Characteristics of Urezti
Urzeti is a sweet late harvest wine from the D.O Bizkaiko Txakolina produced by the Itsasmendi winery. This wine is a blend of two different grape varieties: Hondarrabi zuri zerratie and a small percentage of Izkiriot Handi.
The secret of Urezti is the late harvesting of the grapes used, which usually takes place at the end of November, resulting in an over ripening of the fruit and a higher sugar content. The winemaking process begins with a long a controlled fermentation. This way, the final wine is able to reach the perfect balance between sweetness and acidity that is refined during the long ageing process in the bottle. Before being bottled, Urezti spends between 3 and 6 months in French oak barrels.
The Itsasmendi winery is home to 27 hectares of vineyards situated on the slopes of mountains close to the Bay of Biscay. The vineyards principally grow the native grape variety Hondarrabi zuri zerratie.
The truth is that for many centuries, nobody gave txakolí wine serious consideration, and very few mourned its disappearance. Compared to powerful wines with a higher alcohol content, txakolí was considered a ‘little’ local wine (‘vinillo’) of little interest. For a long time, a wine’s alcohol content was its only introduction. There were periods where still very poor production methods had not allowed the varieties to speak for themselves, and what’s more, txakolí forms part of a family economy at the same home-grown level as meat, milk and fish. In addition, the txacolí industry has not been advanced or prepared enough to rigorously produce this small oenological joy until the last few decades.