Alba Sobretabla 2014 and Ancestral las Alegrías at Angelita

Another quick but incredibly interesting lunch at Angelita yesterday, the highlight of which was the chance to have another look at two of the wines of Alba Viticultores: the Sobretabla 2014 and the Ancestral Las Alegrias del Carrascal. (I should maybe point out that they are not on the winelist – David had opened them to taste them with some friends and was convinced that I had heard the bottles opening/smelt them, so uncanny  was my sudden and unexpected appearance.)

The Ancestral Las Alegrias was particularly interesting. It is a 100% palomino fino from a vineyard by the name of Las Alegrias on the Pago Carrascal in Sanlucar. I think this was harvested and fermented in 2015 although I have no idea when it was disgorged – I reckon it didn’t have long on the rack but there was no indication on the bottle and David was working too hard to be interrupted. I was struck by the nose, with its suggestion of sweetness and leafiness: a bit like having your head in a lemon tree or something. Then on the palate you have a first suggestion of sweetness, then a shock and buzz of carbonic acid and then a bitter fruit palate between a lime and a grapefruit, then length that is mouth watering, buzzy and tart on the tongue.

The Sobretabla 2014 by comparison came across as a little muted. Again I don’t know which of the “botas” this was, but in principle I believe it is 100% palomino fermented in stainless steel, then aged for 14 months in a 500 litre butt that had held manzanilla for over 50 years. Maybe it was an unfair comparison with the Ancestral, which of course has the added dash of the bubbles and carbonic, but it seemed a little shy. Even so, it had a nice salinity and structure, a much more muted flavour between citrus and ripe apples with leafy herbs.

And those two were only the highlights, I started with a very decent pet nat with the oeuvre bouche and with the callos a la asturiana I had yet another dorado de rueda (of which more later) before finishing with a cracking rice – not a great pairing to be fair but it was delicious and just what I needed.




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