Dolores Cabrera "La Araucaria" Tinto 2021
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Direct Press Selection | July 2022
[PRESS 4 RED]
Dolores Cabrera Fernández has been making wine in the Valle de la Orotava, a small village in the Canary Islands, since 2013. A farmer first, and a winemaker second, Dolores has worked her high-elevation, centenarian vines of Listan Blanco and Listan Negro organically since the inception of the winery. What initially drew me to her wines was the great value they offered, and, like many other producers from the Canary Islands, the wines often tasted better on days two or three, making them fantastic candidates for by-the-glass offerings.
The 2021 La Araucaria is a bit of a reinvention of the typically smoky, reductive red she had made in the past. A fresh perspective led her to give the Listan Negro grapes 12 days of whole-cluster carbonic maceration, followed by an additional week of traditional open top fermentation before pressing. The finished wine was then aged for 6 months and bottled unfiltered with a tiny dose of sulfur. All of this set up a wine that is much more friendly and approachable upon opening, but doesn't lose the volcanic elements so many of us love in the wines of this region. Juicy boysenberry and plum are met by a gentle smoky note that doesn't overpower any of the other elements. Buoyant and fresh, with a touch of funky earthy tones to keep things fun. Drink it with a slight chill.
[Kirk Sutherland, July 2022]