An Island Wine For All Occasions
Spain's Canary Islands, located just 67 miles off the coast of Morocco, are isolated. The landscape is harsh and the inhabitants are few. But the wines? The wines are spectacular.
It's no surprise that, in the Canaries, the top winemakers have a sort of unofficial consortium. They help each other out. Whether it's with farming methods, their export partners, or just sharing general advice and expertise.
The man at the center of this group is Roberto Santana, a member of the cult winemaking collective Envínate. He works tirelessly to raise the profile of his home and the passionate vignerons with whom he shares the land.
It was through Roberto that cult Spanish importer José Pastor was tipped off about a young and promising vigneronne from the island of La Palma.
This brings us to Patricia Perdomo, who purchased her family's estate in 2013. As the daughter of a winemaker, she spent her adult-life studying for both an enological degree and sommelier certification. But neither training entirely prepared her to fulfill her dream of learning to make wine the way it had been made a century or more ago. For that, she had to seek out local elders (and friends like Roberto).
The answer was field blending, from very old vines, and strictly limiting intervention in both the cellar and in the vines.
From a high elevation vineyard (a whopping 1200 meters above sea level), co-planted to native varieties Almuñeco (the old name for Listán Negro on La Palma), Listán Prieto, Negramoll and Albillo Criollo, came Patricia's delightful cuvée called El Cántaro.
Once again, we see some influence from Envínate here: in trying to bring back traditional Canarian wine, they've revitalized the vidueño style. This means highlighting a co-fermented field-blend containing red and white varieties.
El Cántaro is also a vidueño. This time the red grapes invigorated by high-acid, fragrant Albillo. We're left with a lifted, refreshing yet still resolutely Canary wine-- with the savory notes and unique earthiness to prove it.
Patricia is surely one to watch in the already-exciting sphere of Canary Islands wine.
With her classical training, her principled approach to winemaking (the farming is organic, SO2 input is minimal, and yields are incredibly low — just 1200 bottles of El Cántaro were produced in 2018) and her fellow winemaker friends, we can't wait to see what she does next.
Get in on the ground floor by buying a few bottles now!