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Monday, 6 April 2015

Two Visitors to my Vineyards and Winery

Like I'm sure I've mentioned before, it's not all hard work in the vineyards and winery - sometimes I get a 'day off' when someone comes to visit, even though it's still considered to be 'work'. A bit like when I travel to a wine fair :)

The first visit was about two weeks ago, by Clara Isamat, of Vinos Compartidos, based in Barcelona. She's producing a video documentary on natural wine, with a chapter or a section for each producer that she's selected. She working with a production company called Entropia Films.

Here's me and Clara, in the patio behind the bodega, on the old weighing station
So basically I spent all afternoon/evening with her and her film crew, blah-blah-blah, answering her questions, and holding forth on all sorts of issues related to natural wines, skin-contact whites, conventional wines, fine wines, the environment, globalization of wines, ingredient labelling, quality, etc, etc.

Checking the quality of the Sauvignon Blanc Amphora

Bottling up, the slow way

Fishing out a glass of Suav blanc
 Here's Victoria and Martí of Entropia Films doing a bit of post-production on the fly

Next day, more of the same, but in the vineyards. Nice and early so they could "catch the light" which is more beautiful just after sunrise!

Here we are in the car on the way to the vineyard. Can you believe that I'd never seen a selfie-stick before? Amazing! This one had a blue-tooth connection to a clicker!

A selfie-stick
I think it's that way
Check out that vine!

Pruning or posing?
Clara brought me a present, a new wine toy called "Kit de Cata" or "Tasting Kit", which consists of special wine socks that you can slip over a bottle of wine when you're playing a blind tastings! Otherwise, you have to wrap the bottle up in silver foil, or use a paper bag, or other inelegant solution! :)   It's great fun, and impossibly difficult to guess the wine (unless you're a professional taster, who tastes many different wines every day). You can get these lovely socks here:

Blind tasting wine socks by adivinosvinos
But I have to say that I've had at least two minor blind tasting triumphs over the last few years: one was when I gate-crashed into a monthly tasting held by a club in a village near Madrid that I happened to be passing through one evening; and I knew they were there so I thought, why not?  Well, the first wine was ridiculously obvious to me, because as luck would have it I'd recently tasted lots of them at a wine fair in London!  It was a Georgian wine and when I declared my guess everyone looked at me like I was mad. But I was right! :)

But anyway, I'm getting distracted! The next visit was by Mario Siragusa, a grapegrower and winemaker from Piemonte, Italy. I'd met hime in Turin last year at Banco, a natural wine bar and bistrot in the old part of Turin, during the Slow Food event back in October last year.

This visit was just for pleasure and no business, but we were blah-blah-blah all day anyway, again about natural wines, additives, ingredient labelling, etc, etc. Mario is a collector/drinker of old vintage wines, and he brought me this as a present:

Vintage Barbaresco 1971
He has more of the same at home and he says that it will be perfectly drinkable. Probably. They say you never can tell with such old wine. I'm starting to take an interest in old vintages, both for the taste and for the collection thing. If only I had more time! :)

Here we are in the Garnacha vineyard in El Tiemblo, Sierra de Gredos:

Fabius et Marius in vinea stant
 And here I am, extracting some Albillo 2014 to taste:

Extracting a sample of Albillo 2104
I really must come up with some other method of taking samples!

Actually, there was a third recent visit - by by Nacho Bueno, but he has his own blog (here) so he can write about it himself! :)


  1. Magic Fabio, your handmade style is my favourite , the visit in El Tiemblo was very interesting for me, see you next time!

    1. ciao Mario, it was a pleasure chatting and drinking wine with you! Looking forward to the next time :)


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