An unexpected bonus wine from the Barajuela project and another historically and educationally important wine.
The name refers to the old classification of wines when they came in from the vineyard – palmas and rayas. Broadly speaking whereas the palmas were fine and could hope to become finos and amontillados, the rayas were heavy and were destined for oxidation. Back in the day the differences in the wine resulted from the mix of varieties in the vineyards, but in the monovarietal present this has been selected from the latest and longest ripening fruit from the multiple passes of the harvest.
The result is a wine where on the nose it smells like there is some residual sugar and first up you get that false sweetness of a late harvest riesling, but without the same level of acidity and a much finer body. (I must admit, I have heard these wines described as “heavy” and “fat” so many times I half expected something syrupy.) it has a nice backbone of salinity but then you get a turn to grapefruit bitterness which I must admit I find a bit disconcerting. Overall it is easy to see why the palmas were so sought after. (On the other hand, it is fascinating to speculate about how a wine like this is transformed by oxidation.)
Very interesting indeed.