Lo Vilero 2019
This is made up entirely of local grape Escursac from a young vineyard farmed by his friend Cati Ribot in Santa Margalida and this wine is a collaboration between the two. The grapes fermented as whole bunches for a fortnight, with the addition of some natural co2 from another tank, before being pressed off for seven months of rest in old casks. A deep, dark shade of blue, this is heady with sunkissed blackcurrants, herbs and fennel but at just 11.5% of alcohol, is incredibly light on its feet. Served a little chilled, it would be wonderful as an aperitif alongside some sobrasada, black olives and a good hunk of sharp, salty cheese.
ABOUT THE PRODUCER
Few wines speak so strongly of where they’re from as those produced by Eloi Cedó Perelló on the island of Mallorca.
Originally from Montsant, Eloi’s project started back in 2010 when he began making a string of one-off wines from the vineyards farmed by friends around his native Catalunya. In 2012 he produced the first vintage of his now iconic cuvée, Chateau Paquita. A tribute to his late mother, this arresting blend of Mallorcan varieties was one of those wines that simply stops you in your tracks – a truly unique expression of man, grape and place.
An island of incredible beauty, Mallorca also offers a unique climate for growing grapes. Though it spends most of the year bathed in sunshine, the vineyards benefit from both the breeze of the Mediterranean and the cool, dry winds of the Mistral. The fascinating local varieties are grown over what the locals call Call Vermell – red, clay soils that are incredibly rich in iron and lend the wines a distinct minerality.
Eloi farms a collection of tiny plots dotted around the island in the villages of Felantix, Porreres, Consell and Santa Margalida. They range from a hectare to just a tenth of that size and the oldest vines were planted in the sixties. He farms organically, employing biodynamic principles and in the bodega displays a real lightness of touch, adding nothing at any stage.
Eloi’s wines have an uncanny sense of place. Though their heady flavours of sunkissed fruit, bitter herbs and sweet sea breeze transport you straight to the island, they are delicate, nuanced and incredibly light on their feet.
Photo: Alba Giné