Alba Sobre Tabla 2014

When looking around for a bottle to open tonight I read this fantastic interview (in Spanish) by the always excellent Spanish Wine Lover of Fernando Angulo, the guy behind Alba Viticultores.

I couldn’t agree more with the article – which talks about how not enough recognition is given to the growers in the region – except in one respect: it is unrealistic to expect the growers to get their just desserts until the winemakers, guys like Fernando who let the terroir express itself, get their recognition. So anyway I opened the only remaining bottle of his wine that I had and I am very glad I did.

These Sobre Tablas are fermented in stainless steel, then aged for 14 months in a 500 litre butt that had held manzanilla for over 50 years (they generally make two butts, bottled separately). They haven’t been under flor, although space is left for a little oxidation and concentration.

I love the salinity of it and the flavours on top, a little acidity and ripe apples –  a really nice acidic cider – with a tingling, saline and mineral finish. The last time I had it it was my wine of a big day and I am enjoying it once again. I can understand the comparisons with top white burgundies – that oxidation and salinity. Maybe the fruit isn’t quite as expressive in between but it does a herbal character, leafy character that its cousins to the North lack. Their loss!

So all power to Fernando and other winemakers like him!




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