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When some are releasing their 2021 wine, Pazo Barrantes took a break and are now releasing their 2019 Gran Vino Albariño, after a hiatus of almost two years. Because they changed almost everything... They have 12 hectares of 35-year-old vineyards divided into eight different plots around the winery in the Val do Salnés plus one hectare they rent from the archbishopric. The soils are degraded and sandy granite and the pruning the traditional "parrón," "emparrado" or pergola at 1.8 to two meters high. The grapes were picked between September 13th and 20th, let to settle and fermented in stainless steel at 10 degrees Celsius for 60 days. The wine was kept with the lees for two months and a further seven months in tank, but 15% of the wine matured in 225-liter acacia barrels. The wine was bottled in June 2020 and was kept in bottle for 16 months. It’s 13% alcohol and has a pH of 3.4 and 7.8 grams of acidity (measured in tartaric acid per liter). The wine is extremely balsamic and medicinal, with an explosive nose with notes of white flowers, but the nose changes, as we know. What impressed me was the seamless structure and the harmony on the palate. It’s titillating, elegant, detailed and nuanced, with terrific balance. I was gobsmacked! 95,097 bottles and 1,425 magnums produced. All bottles are numbered and in the same elegant bottle as La Comtesse. Obviously, the price has changed.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94 RPA fruity nose of apple blossom, nectarine, candied pear, guava, lime cordial and some fresh cider. It’s medium-bodied with bright acidity and a juicy, ripe palate. Subtle saline notes. Round, delicious finish. Drink now.James Suckling | 92 JSThis wine has aromas of white peach with a hint of petrol. It is smooth in the mouth, offering flavors of nectarine, Valencia orange, salted popcorn and dried herbs.Wine Enthusiast | 92 WEThis white has a smooth, luxurious texture, with lime, honey cream, white blossom and tangerine flavors that are matched with a hint of toast and ample spice elements. Mouthwatering acidity is well-integrated, with a long, lingering finish. Drink now through 2024. 11,667 cases made, 1,620 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 91 WSBrilliant, green-hued straw. Aromas of nectarine, orange, Anjou pear and white flowers, with a hint of fennel in the background. Fleshy orchard and pit fruit flavors tighten up with air. Shows very good energy on the long, chewy, mineral-driven finish, which leaves pear skin and honeysuckle notes behind.Vinous Media | 91 VM
The super intense, powerful and sharp 2020 Leirana O Pradiño is one of the new wines here. It’s an explosive, powerful and sharp Albariño from a vineyard they planted in 2012 in Sanxenxo on decomposed gneiss soils with a very fine sandy texture. It has 12.2% alcohol and retained 10.03 grams of acidity and exceptional freshness that creates a small explosion in your mouth. It’s citrusy and mineral, sharp but also balanced and round. It has a nose of hay, straw and freshly cut grass that reminds me of some old traditional Albariño, with a very austere mouthfeel, chalky and fine-grained. This is a wine that used to contribute to the Leirana blend, but they have been fine-tuning and looking for an expressive Albariño that is different. The bottled wine is 12.2% alcohol and has the highest acidity of all the wines here—over 10 grams of acidity. This is the first vintage of a wine that was fermented and matured in oak barrels for one year. Only 750 bottles were filled in July 2021.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96 RP
This has aromas of orange peel, plums, raspberries, wild strawberries, violets and tobacco leaves. Excellent freshness with lightly bitter citrus and herb notes lifting the wild berry fruit, supported by fine tannins. Drink now.James Suckling | 92 JS(Godello “Pagos del Galir”- Virgen del Galir) The 2020 Godello “Pagos del Galir” bottling from Cuné’s Virgen del Galir property is lovely this year. As I have mentioned in the past, this wine hails from the single vineyard of A Malosa, with the wine fermented and raised in stainless steel tanks. The 2020 is fairly ripe, coming in at fourteen percent octane this year, but impressively fresh and vibrant on both the nose and palate,. The bouquet offers up a refined blend of lemon, pear, a bit of raw almond, stony minerality, citrus blossoms and just a whisper of beeswax in the upper register. On the palate the wine is bright, full-bodied, focused and complex, with a superb core, lovely soil signature and grip, sound framing acids and a long, well-balanced and quite wide open finish. Like many 2020 whites, this does not have a ton of acidity, but plenty to carry it over the next ten to twelve years. (Drink between 2022-2035)John Gilman | 92 JGThe white 2020 Pagos del Galir A Malosa Godello was produced with grapes from a large vineyard (21 hectares!) planted over four years after purchasing over 100 small plots from local growers. So, it has different soils, expositions and altitudes. In 2020 they used the grapes from the lower and middle parts, the oldest plantings on slate soils fermented in stainless steel, barrels (500 and 600 liters) and oak foudres and then matured in foudres and barrels for seven months. 2020 saw a very early harvest with higher yields than 2019, resulting in a wine with 13.5% alcohol and 6.5 grams of acidity. They have seen that small barrels don’t work in the region and have moved to larger sizes, all from French oak. The nose has a Burgundian feeling to it, spicy and with a toasty twist. The oak is still there, so it might need more time to get that creaminess integrated, but it’s very clean and of high quality. There is great purity, definition and precision here. The wine is elegant and subtle, with a long, dry and tasty finish. It has good acidity, one of the challenges with Godello. 19,000 bottles and 300 magnums were produced. It was bottled in May 2021.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 91+ RPLight, vivid yellow. Fresh, mineral-tinged citrus and orchard fruits and a powerful floral quality on the perfumed nose. Juicy and focused on the palate, offering lively Meyer lemon, pear and honeysuckle flavors that deepen through the back half. A dusty mineral flourish adds firm cut to the persistent finish, which features clinging citrus fruit and floral notes.Vinous Media | 91 VM
A wine that consistently pleases year after year, this 2021 iteration has lovely upfront lemon blossom, lemon rind, and pure green apple fruit. There’s lots of intensity here, so lots to like. There are 442 families involved in the Paco & Lola co-operative project in Rias Baixas, and all grapes are hand harvested. Fermented in stainless steel and aged on fine lees for at least three months, this manages to retain delicate floral characters as well as cooked lemons and stone fruit. It’s medium-bodied, with decent acidity and length.Decanter | 92 DEC
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