In a nutshell:
A generously appealing, barrel fermented, organic Spanish red from Utiel-Requena west of Valencia.
Bobal is a widely grown, if not widely known, Spanish red grape variety whose home is the hot and dry vineyards of the Valencian interior. Historically it's gone into a lot of bulk wines, but in recent years a number of quality conscious producers have been keen to show what it can do when carefully looked after. Here Manuel Olmo of Bodega Sierra Norte uses old, low yielding vines from their high altitude Feunteseca estate, the fruit of which is fermented and aged for 6 months in barrel. The resulting wine has a lovely open nose with plenty of ripe blackberry and plum fruit, savoury hints and a note of vanilla. The palate is well-balanced with dark fruits, toasty oak, fine tannins and a generous and lifted finish. There's bags of wine for the money here.
Bodega Sierra Norte's Finca Fuenteseca estate lies in Utiel-Requena, a high, rugged plateau, nearly 1,000 metres above sea level just inland from Valencia. The combination of hot, dry summers, cold nights and poor, limestone soil make the area relatively free of vine diseases and so ideal for organic farming. The region is the spiritual home of the Bobal grape variety which suits the local climate perfectly. The whole estate is fully given over to organic production both for Bobal and the other varieties grown here.
When to drink:
Big, but not heavy it's ideal with full-flavoured beef or lamb dishes, or hard cheeses and charcuterie.
Suitable for Vegans, Organic