Spanish Wine Exclusives

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Spanish Wine Exclusives

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La Rioja

Lazarus Wine is one of the most exciting and interesting winemaking projects we have encountered in Spain. Lazarus Wine has pioneered a new winemaking method, Sensorial Winemaking, which incorporates the extraordinary sensitivity of blind winemakers into the process. The result is some of the most expressive Syrah, Merlot and Viognier made in Spain today.
Bodegas Edra is located in the town of Ayerbe, in the Ribera Gallego – Cinco Villas Vino de la Tierra designation, which is in the province of Huesca south of the Somontano DO in the North of Spain, south of France and west of Catalunya. The vineyards are 500 meters above sea level with soil composed of large alluvial stones and calcareous clay, and are subject to a continental climate. Blind people learning the Sensorial Winemaking method take two courses. The first is a course of viticulture, winemaking and wine tasting at the Provincial Delegation of ONCE (The Spanish National Organization of Blind People) in La Rioja. The second is a Sensory Course, taught at the University of La Rioja by Antonio.
The Sensorial Winemaking method is adapted to each type of wine, and the blind winemakers are constantly tasting wines to identify key compounds of microbial metabolism throughout the process. Detected substances affect decisions on fermentation temperature, degree of aeration, time of maceration with skins and seeds, as well as assessing the quality of the lees and the time and type of barrel to use. The same methods are also used for tasting grapes to determine the optimal time of harvest and crio-maceration treatments prior to fermentation. Amazingly, as Sensorial Winemaking is practiced today, blind winemakers are able to detect incipient problems even before they are discernible through chemical analysis.
Although the process is fascinating and quite technical, the end result is very pleasurable: rich, well-made wine that expresses the terroir and character of the area and the noble varieties of Syrah, Merlot and Viognier. We are happy to report that Lazarus Wine is also a boon to the blind community in Spain and we suspect eventually across in the wine producing world. We urge everyone to try and enjoy these special wines.
Each bottle reflects both the purity of aromatics and flavors the blind winemakers help bring to the finished wine and the winery’s unique terroir in Ribera del Gallego – Cinco Villas in the northeast of Spain. The Braille on the award winning wrap-around label reads: “The blind, thanks a high sensitivity of taste and smell, are able to achieve very precise sensory abilities. They are able to detect deviations during the wine elaboration process, anticipating potential problems, allowing time to correct them in order to ensure richer aromatics and structures reach the mouth.”