The range of experimental wines made by Abadía Retuerta is one of the areas of activity that we are most proud of. It reflects the intense work of our technical team in recent years to combat climate change, to test different winemaking styles, and to fully explore the potential of our Duero estate.
The constant search for diversity and novelty in the wine sector means that experimental wines are on the rise. In the past, this research was done internally and was intended to improve the winemaking process and to discover the real potential of the soils, varieties and farming practices. Nowadays, our work is shared in exclusive and limited releases. Their main appeal: they are a great introduction to new flavours and sensations.
Research has been ongoing at Abadía Retuerta from the beginning. On the one hand, the large extension of the property made it necessary to thoroughly familiarize ourselves with the land; on the other hand, being located in a region with extreme climate posed many challenges. All of this, coupled with the demands of a technical team led by winemaker Ángel Anocíbar and advisor Pascal Delbeck, has resulted in a great deal of questions and attempts to answer a good number of them with each new vintage. As we reported a few months ago, the 2019 vintage alone yielded 17 different wines that will never be released.
Three lines of work
There are however many other developments that we are keen to share with our customers and enthusiasts. They are the Winemaker’s Collection, very limited editions of wines that not only show the achievements and highlights of the winery’s technical team, but also broaden the palette of flavours among wine lovers.
In spite of their limited and exclusive character, the Winemaker’s Collection range has expanded considerably in recent years. Some wines can be reproduced virtually vintage after vintage, but new experiences arise every year. In view of such dynamism, we have decided to group the wines into three different lines of work:
Climate. It is a response to our fight against climate change, evidenced in our estate by an increase in temperature, lower and more irregular rainfall, and an upsurge of extreme phenomena (prolonged droughts, scorching vintages alternating with colder vintages). Work is focused on the recovery of varieties that were traditionally planted in this area but the team is also experimenting with numerous others that are well adapted to the estate and which bring considerable freshness to the wines.
Winemaking. The next obvious step, in line with the market’s greater tolerance towards all manner of styles. At Abadía Retuerta we explore all sorts of winemaking options that we believe may be interesting for our vineyards and our varieties.
Soils. Our most recent line of research, very much connected to all the educational work we do at the Terroir Academy. Our goal is to work and identify soil characteristics without altering the viticultural and winemaking standards. These are wines that will appeal to discerning wine lovers.
A window into the future
Here is a preview of some of the new wines we are working on. You are invited to add them to your wish list.
New grape varieties. We are studying the potential of varieties from northern Spain such as Godello, classic French varieties such as Pinot Noir (the queen of red Burgundy), Malbec and Cabernet Franc (the latter two are more closely associated with Bordeaux vineyards) and also native varieties of Castilla y León such as Albillo.
A wide array in the cellar. We are exploring some modern techniques to obtain fresher wines, such as early harvests or fermentation with stems (leaving the ligneous part of the bunch) as well as long ageing periods in oak (in the style of Vega Sicilia Unico or some very traditional Rioja producers) with a “seventh year” red, a wine that has been aged in barrel for seven years.
Alluvium, sand and clay. The research into soils started with a focus on Tempranillo, the dominant variety in the Duero Valley and in our Abadía Retuerta estate. The new Winemaker’s Collection range will enable enthusiasts to compare changes in the expression of the variety when grown in alluvial, sand and clay soils.