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Envínate harvests the power of volcanic soil to produce some of the world’s most exciting and in-demand wines. The hottest wine bars and restaurants fight over allocations to score a handful of bottles each release, and “volcanic wine” aficionados search high and low for them. The talents behind this four-person passion project are immense, and when coupled with extremely old vines growing on unique terroirs, the match strikes and the bonfire of flavors is lit. This is the first, and possibly last, time we can offer Envínate, don’t miss out!
Though we love everything that the Envínate team releases, our hearts are most captivated by their Canary Island wonders. The fiery, aromatically beguiling wines of Tenerife have a devoted following among sommeliers, and the Envínate team has an almost magical ability to coax all of the volcanic power and depth from the ancient vines they farm. Only 800 cases of this rare gem were made, and those are spread around the globe, so act fast.
When Roberto Santana, Alfonso Torrente, Laura Ramos, and José Martínez met at enology school in Southern Spain, they instantly hit it off, bonding over their shared devotion to terroir, aka terruño, and natural winemaking. They made a pact to stick together, and when they graduated, they quickly established their own label, Envínate, which loosely translates as “wine yourself.” Each member of the group returned to his/her regional homeland, but that didn’t stop them from moving forward with their new project. Envínate isn’t a specific DO: it’s a set of principles that guide every aspect of their farming and winemaking. Chemicals are never used in the vineyards, grapes are always hand harvested, and the clusters are trod by foot before fermentation with native yeasts. Aging is in neutral barrels or concrete, and only tiny amounts of sulfur are added at bottling. The entire range of offerings are a sumptuous window into both the past and future of Spanish wine.
Tenerife is the top of a giant, extinct volcano, with Mt. Teide being taller than any mountain in mainland Spain. The vines are low trained bushes, often dug into pits to protect them from the high elevation extremes of weather, that grow on thin layers of organic soil over solid red basalt, usually referred to as lava rock. To say that this is distinct terroir is a monumental understatement.
Today’s discovery, “La Santa de Úrsula,” is a perfect benchmark for the pleasures of Tenerife and the talents of Roberto. The wine is a blend of three of the most important grape varieties in Gran Canaria: Listán Negro, Negramoll, and Listán Blanco. All the vines are 100-plus years old, and farming is done with only organic treatments (like all things Envínate). After native fermentation, the wine is aged for 8 months in neutral oak before it is bottled unfined, unfiltered, and with just a tiny touch of SO2. The result is a pure, volcanic revelation. The first whiff is like a burst of smoke and ash, but decant this wild one for a good 1-2 hours and the silky, delicate red fruits start to mingle beautifully with hints of cinnamon, clove, orange peel and wild strawberry. All of this is wrapped around a core of pure, saline minerals and soft, dusty tannins. Serve it cool at around 55 degrees, in a Burgundy stem, with a grilled lamb burger and you will be living the island life wherever you are. This is a truly unique opportunity, don’t miss it!
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