Geekiest Flight Anywhere with Garnacha on 4 soil types
Its back and twice as fun as before!! A few year's back we discovered Capcanes, a winery in Montsant which is 100 miles southwest of Barcelona, 20 miles inland from the Mediterranean sea, with a long wine growing history dating back to the middle ages. Despite this traditional foundation they do one of the most fun and intriguing garnacha bottlings we've ever seen. Imagine 4 vineyards where the ripe Grenache/Garnacha is picked at the same ripeness, all are fermented in controlled temperatures and macerated for 28 days. All see 4 months in French oak, in fact the only true difference is each vineyard is dominated by a different soil type.
Some of you may remember when we were lucky enough to have the Slate (Llicorella) and Limestone versions of these wines a few years ago. Well we cajoled and begged and pleaded and we just received not only the Slate and Limestone, but also the Clay and Sand versions!
The sand soil here is honeycombed from eroded beaches and arid desert, deep roots push through to find concntrations of lime. This is the most acidic soil in the area. The clay soil is found in the old lake basins, compact without oxygen where the plants desperately strive to find the filtered water. Clay is of medium or average acidity. The limestone soils are not very acidic featuring fragmented, calcified, ancient crustaceans. This soil is loose but so loose that water isn't held at all forcing the roots deeper and deeper underground. Lastly the famous Priorat Llicorella dominates the slate soil type and dominates the top layer in these vineyards. This rock is formed during ancient volcanic times in a high pressure environment, deep within the earth's crust, forming laminate like layers during its formation process. This is very acidic soil.
So does all of this matter? Can you tell a difference? The bio-chemists like to say it's impossible, and us wine geeks are just making this up. They have not found the mechanism or process by which soil is represented in finished wine, so we must be full of it. You will have to decide for yourself, try a flight of all four wines side by side and savor this unique experience! We sure are!