At Palacios Vinos de Finca we can say that this has been an excellent vintage. Once the harvest is over, it is time to take stock. And it couldn't be better. Working in cool areas has meant that the ripening process has been slower, unlike in other wineries, where it has been faster and the harvest has been brought forward. Because these slower maturities are the key to the quality wines we make.
In our case, the harvest has been brought forward in some plots by barely a week; however, in others, we have harvested later than last year.
Knowing the terrain, our soils. Finding the right balance between plant, climate, soil and water. All of this in order to understand why the grapes that grow on our land express themselves differently. We have studied our plots in detail, in order to be able to apply measured and precise agriculture to them, with the aim of obtaining the best grapes to make wines with soul, with meaning.
Our oenologist Raúl Tamayo says that in the fifteen years he has been making wines, he has never seen a healthier vintage than this year. Because at Palacios Vinos de Finca we leave nothing to intuition and our optimum results are the fruit of observation and meticulous analysis of the state of our vineyards and our privileged plots. This is why the grapes have arrived in such an exceptional state of health.
The weather during the months of July and August, with an extreme and prolonged heat wave, has not affected our vineyards much, because being located at higher altitudes, they have benefited from the thermal contrast between day and night, which is optimal for the vine and, consequently, has allowed the slow ripening mentioned above. However, some plots that do not have the possibility of irrigation or that have very poor soils have been affected, not so much in terms of quantity, but rather in terms of a decrease in the acidity of the grapes.
So, in terms of kilos harvested, we have not noticed much difference compared to last year. In the Sonsierra and Najerilla areas, we can estimate a very similar volume; in Garnacha, even more. And Maturana Blanca has suffered, where we have obtained less kilos, because it has suffered more from the drought.
Viura was exceptional, with a very balanced ripeness.
Not all varieties have behaved in the same way at Palacios Vinos de Finca. We have been working for years to cultivate vineyards at higher altitudes, to guarantee humidity, freshness and water. Our vineyards, for example, are located between 500 and 700 metres above sea level on the slopes of Moncalvillo, Alto Najerilla and Nalda. That is why the viura has performed the best this year. It has been exceptional, with a very balanced ripeness, so we can predict that there will be a great limited edition this year. The Tempranillo and Garnacha varieties have also been very good.
In general terms, at Palacios Vinos de Finca we can assure that we are facing a great vintage, even excellent; one of the best we have experienced at Bodegas Proelio and Bodegas Nivarius. It may not have been spectacular or very good, because there are areas that have suffered a lot from drought, very early ripening and imbalance in the grapes. But this is not our case.
A lot of work ahead
Once the harvest is over and with most of the work focused on the winery, at Palacios Vinos de Finca we have not forgotten about the vineyards. We are carrying out a small subsoiling in alternate lanes to break roots and, above all, to deepen the soil so that the water that falls -a very necessary water, because it has been a very dry year- goes deeper towards the roots.
We are also breaking some roots, especially in the centre of the street, so that roots can develop in depth, which is key to our project. Because, as we always insist, the soil holds much of the information that will allow us to find our own personality in our terroirs, which will later be transmitted to our wines. And it is key to work in these soils and find gifted territories to make unrepeatable wines that are different from any other.