Bodegas Miquel Oliver Visit

“4th generation winemaking brings contemporary standards to a fine tradition!”

Miquel Oliver logo
www.miqueloliver.com
+34 971 56 11 17
Petra, Mallorca, Spain

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Bodegas Miquel Oliver was founded in 1912 by Melchor Oliver, who began by planting his grapes after the Phylloxera blight.  In 2012, his grandson Miquel and great granddaughter Pilar celebrated their winery’s 100th anniversary in their beautiful old 1868 Petra facility.

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A member of D.O. Pla i Llevant, Bodegas Miquel Oliver currently produces around 220,000 bottles of wine per year. 85% of their wine is sold locally, and the rest is exported to northern countries. 95% of the visitors that come through this winery for sales and tastings are German tourists.  Here on island, their distributor delivers to restaurants, markets, and shops with different bottles going to different markets like Corté Ingles, Eroski, and Al Campo. At the time of this writing they are just finishing a new facility which will bring all production under one roof and they will only keep this historic bodega for special events.

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Señor Miquel Oliver is in his eighties now and mostly retired. The current owner is Pilar, the great-granddaughter of the original Melchor. Sadly for us, Pilar wasn’t there that day to meet; she sounds like an incredible woman. She is the bloodline owner, winemaker, and now innovator. She studied winemaking in Tarragona and then traveled around before perfecting her education and returning home to make wine.The opening summary of their wine tasting booklet sums up the bodega very well:

“By blending the traditional values of a one-hundred year old family cellar with a love of innovation, we’ve succeeded in making wine a form of self-expression.”

Road to Petra

We drove in to Petra via the old road from Sineu, which was lined with lovely rolling fields spotted with hay bales: definitely a suggested drive!  Petra is a historically rich inland town, and the birthplace of recently Sainted Father Junipero Serra, the Franciscan Friar who colonized/converted California through the famous Missions in the mid 1700’s.

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Parking on the tiny urban street, we made our way to the big delivery doors of Bodega Miquel Oliver. We were met by Ana, our tasting host, and she walked us from the office and display rooms, across the tiny street to the beautiful 1868 tasting area and former barrel rooms.

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Taking in the gorgeous vaulted ceilings and barrels lining traditional plaster walls, Ana told us that 2015 is the last year that most of their production will have been done over in Manacor, their barrel aging and bottling done here, and their storage kept elsewhere in Petra. That reminded us of Vins Miquel Gilabert which is also stretched across multiple locations! But in this case, within two weeks of our tasting, a new Bodegas Miquel Oliver facility on the Manacor-Petra road will open and house it all!

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We asked Ana for the deluxe tasting, and she poured us seven wines! Please see our Miquel Oliver Tasting Notes for details.

Miquel Oliver_Wine Selection

As she poured, Ana told us that the varietals they work with are Prensal Blanc, Muscatel, Merlot, Syrah, Callet, Fogoneu, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Manto Negro (which they use only for the Mont Ferrutx Crianza). She told us they put a lot of energy, love, and sweat into raising these grapes and making these wines!

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We learned that currently they are experimenting with new French oak barrels, but the barrels in this tasting room turn out only to be for decoration now. Ana told us they only use their barrels for four years, and then retire them for décor or sale. We asked about a huge old wooden tank standing regally in the corner. Ana told us it was a storage tank, made of Chestnut wood, and she was not sure of its age.

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Further discussing oak barrels, Ana told us that new French oak is intense and in time smooths and matures to the traditional “chocolate- or coffee-like” notes. American oak barrels start with strong tannins, and later impart a softer almost vanilla flavor. Russian oak is more neutral, and Romanian and Hungarian oaks are like milder versions of French. She also told us they use only natural cork from Portugal and Spain.

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Ana told us Bodegas Miquel Oliver is the first bodega to bring stainless steel tanks to the island back in 1986, and that Pilar was the first to make dry Muscatel wine on the island (having learned of it in France when she was apprenticing). As you surely know, the Muscat grape is very sweet and aromatic when ripe, and is usually used to make a sweet aperitif or dessert wine.

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We learned that the wines in their Son Caló line are their house-wines for easy drinking with meals. It is named after a beautiful cove on the north of the island, where Tawnee has been by boat, so the Son Caló line resonates with her!

Son Calo Wine at Son Calo Beach
It turns out that this bodega has the majority of its older vines in that area. This is very common as historically, the inland farms were the most valuable for food and feed crops and the coastal properties were for luxury and the summer. Each inland town had a coastal area that the inhabitants visited every summer. Colonia Sant Pere and Son Calo, where Mont Ferrutx is located, is in the summer coastal land of the Petra people. Bodegas Miquel Oliver only just recently started planting in Petra at the new facility.

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For the last few years, making 200,000 liters each year has been quite a big job for a team of only seven people (that number will change in the new facility!) — and they make a large variety of wines too, eleven in total. One of the things we really like about these wines is their character, not only in the flavors, but also in the naming. For example, the names Mont Ferrutx and Ses Ferritges come from the land where the grapes are planted. Another bottle that is unique is named 1912, a Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot blend made in 2012 as a celebration of their 100 year anniversary. It has a really cool label and we’ve added it to our list of wines to try. They also make a bottle called Xperiment, which is a new experiment every year. They only make 700 bottles, two barrels, so it is always a limited edition!

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Probably the best wine that comes from the bodega is called Aia (which we were not able to taste), and it is named after Pilar’s mother; we love that tradition and ode! All the barrels used for this bottle are new French, American, Russian, Romanian and Hungarian oaks, and we look forward to being able to try it at the new facility! We love all the traditions that this bodega has! Like how the great grandfather Francisco started putting a bottle from each new year under the big Chestnut storage barrel, and they still continue doing it to this day!

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We understand that they were in the process of moving, yet of course we were disappointed not to see and discuss more of the traditional processes of barrel aging and bottling. However Ana was very knowledgeable about the wines! We feel very lucky to have experienced the original bodega as we did; and now look forward to coming back and starting all over again with a tour and tasting at the new Miquel Oliver Winery. One bodega with two stops on our Mallorca Wine Trail!

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Miquel Oliver Map


Directions:

Driving in direction from Inca to Manacor or visa-versa, you will see the Miquel Oliver bodega on the main road just outside of Petra. You can not miss it!

See Wines Tasted at Miquel Oliver: Click here

### Miquel Oliver ###

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Cellar Jaume de Puntiró Wine Tasting

Jaume Puntiro logo

 

Wines Tasted

◊   2 Whites   ◊

Blanc 2014
Moscatell Dolc 2012

◊   3 Reds  

Carmesi 2013
Buc 2011
Porprat 2012

Jaume Puntiro Wine.jpg

Jaume de Puntirò is the oldest certified organic wine maker in Mallorca. Their wines are bursting with character and values. They have 2 different lines of wine: their normal selection and a Crianza line with artistic labels, plus a special red and sweet white. Most of the wines are named after colors in the Mallorcan language, and they each have their own symbol that represents that wine and is known as the Alphabet Puntirò; a beautiful blend of creativity and wine.


#1
Jaume Puntiro Blanc
Blanc 2014
Grapes: Prensal Blanc 100%

Jaume de Puntiró_Blanc 2014

Comment:

Tawnee: A very vibrant wine! It is a pale color of yellow. There are notes of fruit, and it has a delicate finish. A young white wine made from white grapes – named appropriately – Blanc is white in Mallorcan.  Perfect for a fruit salad or a salad with nuts.

Merie: Blanc 2014 is a blanc de blanc (white wine made from white grapes) made from 100% Prensal Blanc. This tasty wine has a beautiful, sweet aroma, with bold flavors consistent of a young wine. It is refreshing, dry and tart like a green apple, very even and fresh.


#2
Jaume Puntiro Dolc Moscatell
Moscatell Dolç 2012
Grapes: Muscatel 100%

Jaume de Puntiró_Moscatell Dolc 2012

Comment:

Tawnee: A delicious sweet wine – I bought a bottle immediately! There are floral aromas. It is very balanced and has a wonderful honey finish. An excellent end to a summer meal!

Merie: The Muscatel Dolç 2012 is a lightly sweet wine aged in oak. The aroma is not sweet, but full and interesting! The taste is lovely! There is some sweetness but it is not sugary. It is a very light, refreshing wine and perhaps my favorite here.


#3
Jaume Puntiro Carmesi
Carmesi 2013
Grapes: Manto Negro
Callet
Cabernet Sauvignon

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Comment:

Tawnee: A good blend of traditional Mallorcan grapes and a solid Cabernet. Crimson in color, just like the name states. The Mallorcan earth tones are definitely notable. This is a good organic table red to have around the house.

Merie: Next Pere poured us the Carmesi. Like the name, it is crimson red in color. The flavor is oaky, as well as lightly tart. I was told that winemakers like a bit of acid in the right proportion, as it promotes salivation = mouth-watering!  This wine is a blend of Manto Negro, Callet and Cabernet Sauvignon varietals, and aged 12 months in American oak barrels.


#4
Jaume Puntiro Buc
Buc 2013
Grapes: Manto Negro
Cabernet Sauvignon

Jaume de Puntiró_Buc 2011

Comment:

Tawnee: A spicy wine! This comes from the Crianza artistic line. I personally did not enjoy the nose on this wine very much, but the flavor was dynamic and enjoyable! It was earthy and spicy. Good with a rack of lamb or grilled goat.

Merie: The Buc 2011 is made from a blend of Manto Negro and Cabernet Sauvignon grapes from older vines. The name Buc comes from the region the grapes are grown: Es Plà de Buc. It is a 12 month Crianza, aged in American oak barrels. Pere described it as “fuerte y duro.” Strong and intense, it has aromas of pepper and cinnamon. This wine has personality!


 #5
Jaume Puntiro Porprat
Porprat 2012
Grapes: Manto Negro
Prensal Blanc
Giro Ros
Callet

Jaume de Puntiró_Porprat 2012

Comment:

Tawnee: A bold wine! The nose is full of spice and earth. Drinking it is very easy as it is well balanced. It would be great with braised beef or a shoulder of lamb. It is from the Artistic line of Crianza wines.

Merie: The last wine we tried was the Porprat 2012. Porprat means purple in Mallorquin, and is named for the deep color of this blend of Manto Negro, Prensal Blanc, Giro Ros, and Callet Grapes. Note there is a white grape in this red wine!  That might be a first for us!  This is a rich, hearty red with strong aromas and flavors, and a good tannin structure.


 

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Thank you Pere!

Please see Jaume de Puntiró Visit: Click Here

### Jaume de Puntiró ###

Vins Ca’n Novell Visit

“Authentic Mallorcan wine, good quality everyone can afford.”

Vins Can Novell logo

(Currently No Website)
+34 971 51.13.10
Binissalem, Mallorca Spain

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Inconspicuously situated on a small urban street in the heart of Binissalem, entering Vins Ca’n Novell is like going back in time to when locals and expats came from all over the island to refill bottles and stock up on wine for their meals. Ancient and enormous wooden casks line the back wall, wine-soaked and full of bulk wine on tap. Also for sale, old-fashioned multi-liter glass bottles with rubber baskets are available so you can reuse instead of wasting or recycling! Vins Ca’n Novell also has sealed bottle production of their wines, with 12 different labels; and tastings are available here too. This bodega is over 100 years old that they know of, with a current astonishing production of around 100,000 bottles per year. They are located not far from the larger José Ferrer and Tianna Negre wineries, but Vins Ca’n Novell is a blast from the Mallorcan past in comparison!  They seem not to be a part of the D.O. Binissalem – they were here before it existed and are conducting business as usual!

Without Origin...and what?Translation: A great wine without Denomination of Origen…and so what?

Hot and coming from a tasting, we went in search of water in Binissalem and stumbled onto Vins Ca’n Novell. In the short time that we were there, village people came by moped, bike, or car to pick up their daily wine. Standing wide eyed, we were greeted by a man as he rushed past us, full of smiles and life. “Have you been helped?” he called. It was none other than owner Andreu Villalonga. We excitedly asked for a tasting and a short tour – we were cutting it close with our next tasting scheduled in ½ hour; Andreu was in a hurry too, and jumped immediately into talking with passion about his wine! He showed us all the 12 different wines he makes on the display table, and then without hesitation went into the refrigerator and happily exclaimed “Let’s try the white!” We loved it! Then he asked us what we thought the price was…and to our surprise! Very few Euros!! Great wine at an incredible price!

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Lovely to see such enthusiasm, Andreu was bubbling with enjoyment for Mallorcan wine. He told us that the majority of his wines are made with local grapes, and showed us that all the labels are in Mallorquin – like the Chardonnay labeled Xardoné (the x in Mallorquin is pronounced like the ch in English). So special! Fourth generation in this family, Andreu told us he was unable to actually stop work and tour us, yet he opened several bottles and poured splashes into lovely tiny bar glasses, and then ran us around the operational back introducing us to all! Andreu told us that their “de granel” = “bulk wine” is the same quality and taste as that wine when bottled.

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Quickly we were whisked along into the back rooms where bottles were being cleaned and labeled, vans were loading, work in progress! Andreu told us that they box and store the cases of bottles at controlled temperature, allowing aging there, and never sell a case before its time.  He introduced us to a pair of men waiting patiently for him. One of them was a Friar here to return empty bottles. This winery reuses all the bottles you bring back, at the time of this writing: 1 Euro for 12 bottles! That is incredible considering that at the time of this writing, their wines are all well under ten Euros/bottle!  Andreu buys the bottles, cleans and reuses them, rather than buying new or recycling the glass, which he says makes the most sense to keep costs and waste down – and 300 Colombian kids eat because of this Friar’s return efforts! Kindness and environmental awareness in action, beautiful!

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In the far back of the sprawling building, we came to what is probably the formal entrance and office area. Cool, quiet, with beautiful stone floors, antique winemaking tools stand on display beside an enormous 200 year old olive wood cask that was still used for bulk wine until just recently. Here Andreu told us they had a huge tour of young Americans coming that weekend and he would feed them and pair his wines out at their nearby vineyard, then bring them back there for a tour. He said it would be a really fun group and he was looking forward to it. His joy was contagious. He invited us to join them, but stupidly neither of us managed to get away from real-life that day. Now we’re thinking we need our heads examined!

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Bubbling with passion
for his work
their wine
the vines
Wine for the people!

Vins Ca’n Novell is both funky and pretty, functioning and hopping. It’s a bodega with your daily table wine, made by locals and for everyone’s table! Come one, come all!

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Directions:Vins Can Novell map
When you get to Binissalem on the old Inca/Palma road, at the streetlight, turn towards the city center following the city center sign. This is the street that leads you directly to the plaza with the church on it. About three quarters of the way into the city center you will see the bodega on your right. Ca’n Novell!

See Wines Tasted at Vins Ca’n Novell: Click Here

### Vins Ca’n Novell ###

Bodegas Angel Winery Visit

Where passion and expertise meet – consistently dry wines to the owner’s taste.”

Angel Bodega logo
+ 34 971 621 638
www.vinosangel.com
Santa Maria del Cami, Mallorca Spain

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Owner Andreas Gelabert told us from the beginning that he had very specific ideas about how he wanted to make his wine.  He  looked a long time to find the perfect location to build Bodegas Ángel. Having found it here in the island’s most competitive wine region, he boldly decided not to join the local Binissalem Denomination of Origin because of the restrictive guidelines.  Instead, he elected simply to be a member of the island-wide organization Vi de la Terra Mallorca [wines from the soil/terroir of Mallorca], which allows for more freedom of grape choice. All of the wines he produces are dry, to his personal taste. The winery owns 17.5 hectares of vineyards, and the oldest vines were planted in 1960 on land Andreas bought. He planted new vines in 2006 and 2007, and Bodegas Ángel opened in 2008, which is also the year of their 1st vintage. This year they produced almost 200,000 bottles, including two whites, one rosé, and six reds. The lines are: Angel, Sa Bassetta (which is the name of the vineyard with the oldest vines), and Specialty releases.

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Tawnee was working the hands-free phone in the car to find which wineries in our area were open and accepting tasters. She had wanted to go to Ángel for a long time and luckily, they were open. However, when we got there, owner Andreas Gelabert (not related to the Manacor Gelaberts) was exhausted. He had endured a morning of tour buses and there were empty wine glasses all over the counter and tasting room. He said he couldn’t give us the tour, but if we wanted to hang out with him while he loaded the dishwasher, he’d give us a tasting. We love the individuality of all our tasting experiences!

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The winery name ÁNGEL comes from his names ANdreas GELabert, and he said he came up with it in one of the thousands of hours he spent on his tractor preparing the vineyard. Ingenious! And nicely translatable in both English and Spanish: An angel spirit in both languages, as well as a common first name in Spanish. It is a perfect blend of who he is and what he stands for. Tall and solidly built, Andreas is Mallorcan, yet speaks English fluently. We started the tasting in Spanish and when he heard we were conversing in English – he said “Want to do this in English?” in a startlingly perfect American accent! It turns out he went to school in Texas and California and loved it! In California, a distributor friend dropped off a few cases of different wines at his house one weekend, and with an inquisitive mind he started tasting, and comparing; and the rest is history: He began his understanding of wine by self-educating – like us!

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Andreas started the bodega from personal interest and has a lot to show for it; his intent and interest are palpable from architecture to aroma. His passion is for dry wine, so Andreas is very careful with full yeast fermentation, allowing no residual sugars in the finish. He is refining his wine selection to make only what he considers to be very good wine; so whereas in 2014 he had three whites, this year he produced only two. He pays attention to detail and is willing to sacrifice for perfection… and one feels the nice mix of old world and new world in his character and this bodega. About returning here to start his winery, Andreas said simply “Mallorcan’s always come back. There is nowhere better.” Living in California with the wine hype probably added to his passion for wine at a young age, because it was there that he decided to make a real go at wine making; not everyone can do it and be successful! He received his BA degree in Business, not Oncology, which we are sure helps in his business model and the success of Ángel. There are definitely American notes to all that he has done!

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While pouring, Andreas shared a lot. He told us that Manto Negro grapes give raspberry notes. The local red earth, “Call Vermell” is rich in iron oxide, which contributes to the earthy notes. French Oak is used for notes of chocolate and coffee, while American Oak lends vanilla. This year American Oak was harder to get because the bourbon industry changed their regulations and bought all new barrels, thus reducing supplies drastically.  At Ángel they use 50% American Oak and 50% French Oak. However, Andres said he loves American Oak and purposefully uses it for the vanilla flavors it brings. We are guessing his palate was formed on California wines – and we love that he purposefully brings a little American taste to the island! Finishing up his dishes, and pouring our last tasting, he told us that that most of his local clients are German, English, and Swedish expatriates, and most of the tourists are Scandinavian and German. As evidenced by the large, elegant facility, he clearly has a great business mind as well as a very good palate!

Friday afternoon, sun beating down.
Should be going to the beach, but the Wine Trail is calling
A true Friday arrives in the face of the owner
Dry wines on the humid island
Divine.

Leaving with bottles in hand to take home, we noticed a single outdoor table set for lunch – and realized sorrowfully that as late as it was, we had been keeping him from his mid-day meal! What a fine gentleman and vintner. And of course, we are already planning to go back again and get a full tour of the beautiful facilities… and looking forward to another great day on our Mallorcan Wine Trail!

Mallorca Wine Trail

Directions:Bodega Angel Map
When you come off the highway- Palma-Alcudia. Take the Exit for Santa Maria/Santa Eugenia. Go in direction of Santa Eugenia. It is on this main road the right hand side coming from Palma and going in direction Santa Eugenia. You can not miss the sign or the beautiful building.

See Wines Tasted at Bodega Angel: Click Here

###   Bodegas Ángel Visit  ###

Pere Seda Winery Visit

“Industrious winery emphasizes local grapes at peoples’ prices.”

Pere Seda Logo
+34 971 55.02.19
http://www.pereseda.com

Manacor, Mallorca Spain

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Over a century ago, Señor Pere Seda (Pedro Reus Morro 1886-1942) had vineyards in the Manacor area of Mallorca. This winery was founded by, and named after him. The Winery Pere Seda is a family run business (the same family since the beginning), and now produces 600,000 bottles per year. Yes, that’s right, a huge enterprise. And all production is done at their site in Manacor – from grape crates to shipping boxes. With over 100 hectares of local vineyards, they are in the D.O. Pla i Llevant, and are the biggest winery there. They use all natural cork, and sell young white, rosé and reds, Crianza and Reserva reds, and Cava (sparkling wine). Their grapes are Callet, Manto Negro and Prensal, Tempranillo, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Parellada, Macabeo, Muscatel and Chardonnay.

A little about the name: Pere is Mallorcan for Peter, and Seda means silk. Seda was perhaps his ‘mal nombre’ or ‘apodo’,  something similar to a family nickname. These ‘nicknames’ are very common here, and often a person is only known by that. The tradition here is to name children after the grandparents’ first names (and wines too we’ve learned!), so a big family could have many Peres, which gets confusing. Hence the “mal nombre.”

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Massive steel tanks greeted us as we entered the gate, and instantly it was like we were in an Industrial Revolution era bottling plant.  Big time operations call for big-time production. With no sign of tourism or classic Mallorcan architectural detail, this winery was all business. Hearing and seeing activity, we walked into the bottling area and watched the production line of gorgeously backlit rosé being bottled and boxed. The workers looked at us, but nobody approached us… Not their job. We wandered around alone for a while, and finally stopped a man on a loader who went and found our man Tofol (short for Christobal, or Christopher in English). Greeting us quizzically, it felt like we caught him off guard, and we guessed they don’t have many drop-ins! He was very gracious and thorough during our tour and tasting, yet we kept feeling like he needed to be somewhere else, and didn’t quite understand why we were there… Self-education!

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Getting the tour, everything was vast and well organized for maximum production value. The bottling, sealing, and labeling machines were gigantic and loud, the fermenting tanks towering and many: Row upon row, steel and wooden…but enormous wooden like from the past…and still in use. We haven’t seen anything like these at other wineries, big or small. Writing this, we are curious how long these permanent tanks have been in use, and what the wine tastes like that is fermented in these instead of steel… must go back and ask!

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Tofol explained that the Pere Seda Winery has become so big that they don’t fit into the buildings any longer; with newer and multi-story tanks outside and behind the place just to keep up with demand. This was by far the most industrial bodega that we have been to, and it was fascinating to see such industry all for our delicate friend – wine! Funny how you see a bottle of wine on the shelf at a store, and never wonder what its childhood was like.  Now we know!

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Then Tofol took us downstairs to the aging area and suddenly we were in another world. The wonderfully cool barrel rooms, long halls and endless dim tunnels, felt like vast catacombs. Room after cistern-like room of old fermentation chambers now housed bottles resting and coming to age. We had seen this before at Ribas and even Miquel Gelabert, but not on this scale!

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It was incredible that hidden under the loud, big industry above, lay this labyrinth of small cellars and secret passages. Walking through these Tofol described their lines of wine:

  • L’Arxiduc – Blends from local and foreign grapes.
  • Mossèn Alcover and GVIVM – 2 variety blends from old growth vines and oak fermented
  • Crianza and Reserva – American oak fermented
  • Novell – That year’s vintage
  • Chardonnay – 100%: one label aged in French oak and one straight to bottle.
  • Sparkling – Cava with 2nd fermentation in the bottle

Pere Seda is one of the few Mallorcan wineries to make a Cava, Jose Ferrer being another.  We look forward to trying it!

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Ending the tour we were rewarded with a tasting in their reception salon. Standing in the baking summer sun, Tofol opened the anonymous door – and we were greeted by cool air and a beautiful ambiance of high ceilings, oak barrels, and glass tabletops. Here was the Mallorcan style we’d been missing! A small group with a distributor were there in a meeting, but we were granted a tasting anyways – lucky us!

Bottles clanking in line
Serene catacombs below
Ambiance-rich tasting room
Industrious, yet local

We’re sure a reservation was a courtesy we owed Tofol, but he rose to the occasion and gave us a great tasting. Please see our Pere Seda Tasting Notes for wines tasted.

Directions:Pere Seda Map
When you arrive to Manacor on the highway from Palma- you go straight through the round-about and follow the signs to Felanitx/Cales de Mallorca and when you get to the next round-about take the left (or first exit) direction Felanitx/Cales de Mallorca. Go through the next roundabout and under the tunnel and at the following round about- go all the way around and head back in, but to the right of the tunnel- there is a Yellow sign that says- Bodega Pere Seda. From there follow the yellow signs to the entrance!

See Wines Tasted at Pere Seda: Click Here

### Pere Seda ###

Pere Seda Wine Tasting

Pere Seda Logo

Wines Tasted

◊   1 White   ◊

Chardonnay 2014

◊   2 Reds   ◊

Crianza 2010
Molson Alcover 2011

Pere Seda wine

Pere Seda is no small-scale production. There is wine, wine and more wine. Everything at the winery is big and industrious. It is incredible to see the contrast between the other bodegas that we have visited and this one, as it is one of the few Mallorcan wineries on this level. Pere Seda has a longstanding reputation, and is a reasonably priced, quality controlled wine; and that is an important product! Their wine is a good choice when you want to bring more than one bottle to a picnic or casual dinner and want it to be local.

Tasting Choices: We did not try anything from L’Arxiduc line, which are Semi-Crianza white, rosé, and red; aged 4-6 months in barrel, and made of local and foreign varietals, nor the Novell line which are new, this year vintages.  Tofol had offered us a tasting choice of three wines, and as we already had a solid understanding of Novell wines from different summer events (very pleasant and fresh) we skipped them now, but recommend you try them when looking for a people’s price local wine.


#1
Chardonnay 2014
Grapes: Chardonnay 100%

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Comments:
Tawnee: I am not a Chardonnay drinker…I am hoping that my Mallorca Wine Trail will lead me to a new understanding and appreciation for them, but I still have not found one that I like. This Chardonnay has a very light yellowing color and subtle fruit aromas. It is lightly acidic and crisp. It would be good served as a before-dinner wine in either summer or winter.

Merie: First Tofol poured the 100% Chardonnay young white wine. This wine goes from fermenting tank to bottle, so it is crisp, not an “oaky Chardonnay.” It is a straightforward table white, the kind you can cook with and sip at the same meal to keep the flavours congruous.


 #2
Crianza 2010
Grapes:
Cabernet Sauvignon
Merlot
Syrah
Callet

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Comments:
Tawnee: This is a real ruby-red color and the aromas are sweet. It fills the mouth well and ends with a distinct finish. It would be a great accompaniment to a cheese plate or white meats – chicken, turkey, or pheasant.

Merie: Then we tried the Crianza red. 12 months in 80% American and 20% French Oak barrels. This is a complex red and the many components support the overall depth. As we go to more and more wineries, I begin to see the parallels in grape choice blends and fermenting choices, and it is interesting to see how different the products are!


 #3
Molson Alcover 2011

Grapes:
Cabernet Sauvignon
Callet

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Comments:
Tawnee: This is a new combination of grapes – we have not tried Cabernet Sauvignon and Callet – it is normally Monte Negro. Surprisingly enough (for me) it is noticeable! Callet is another local Mallorcan grape. This is an intense wine with a distinct finish. It is definitely the most bold of the three we tried. I would suggest eating it with Mallorcan wild goat or lamb.

Merie: We finished with the limited release Mossèn Alcover red made from Cabernet Sauvignon and Callet grapes from old vines, and aged in oak. Clearly one that Pere Seda is carefully blending, celebrating the strengths of the local grape with the support of tried-and-true Cabernet.


Heres the rub: Interestingly, both of these reds today reminded us of Jose Ferrer wines, and we wish we could be more articulate about the similarities. There is an existing flavor or quality – perhaps residual sugars or less bold tannins – that results in a similar finish.  Let us know what you think!!!


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Thank you Tofol!

Please see Pere Seda Visit: Click Here

###   Pere Seda  ###

Miquel Gelabert Winery Visit

“Artisanal techniques and ingenuity create a spectrum for the palate.”

miquel gelebert logo
(+34) 971 821 444
www.vinsmiquelgelabert.com
Manacor, Mallorca, Spain

Miquel Galabert Location

Open sesame – hidden away on a tiny residential street of Manacor, an anonymous door opened, and suddenly we are in a miniature but full-production bodega: Vins Miquel Gelabert. The family story goes that in 1984 Miquel cooked in his own restaurant in Manacor. His father owned land, and they were selling grapes to other wineries for so little money that they decided to try their own hand at wine making. At first, Miquel sold the bottles at his restaurant, but soon the demand was high enough to change careers and create Vins Miquel Gelabert. Today, though still small-scale and family run, Miquel and his team work with more than 30 varieties of grapes, creating blends unparalleled on the island. He is a champion of the local varietals! For the record, Manacor, and Miquel Gelabert wines, are in the Denominació D’Origen of Pla i Llevant, on the southern plains of Mallorca.

Miquel Gelabert Person

For a small island, we drove a long way to get to the old and almost industrial city of Manacor. That day we were searching for the two family-run wineries of brothers Toni and Miquel Gelabert [note that Miquel is spelled with a q, not a g, which is the Mallorcan spelling and pronunciation]. They had both been recommended previously by a favorite winery when we confessed our self-education project, and we were anxious to taste their work and see their bodegas.

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We GPS mapped Vins Miquel Gelabert first, and somehow ended up on some tiny street in a small residential area, so of course we were sure our GPS was wrong. But no, looking closer we found telltale stucco grapes over a wide entrance, and when daughter Maria opened the door she revealed the remarkable antique urban bodega within! Built in 1909, it was originally designed as a winery on the rural outskirts of town, and now lies hidden in its center. We only know it was owned by someone else and was purchased by Miquel in the mid 1980s, when he began to make his own wines in earnest.

Miquel Galabert fermenting tanks

Stepping into the entry, two tall stainless tanks towered to our right and Maria told us that the wine in both was already sold in advance. The small room was wallpapered in a patchwork of awards. Maria told us that 50% of their wines are for Mallorca, and 50% for export to Europe.

Miquel Galabert Awards

She led us down a long and steep spiral staircase to the small room where their wine ages in barrels and bottles. Apparently without exception, all Miquel Gelabert reds are aged 12 months in barrel. She told us that though almost all Mallorcan wineries stick to the Spanish rule of Crianza being 6 months in barrel, in fact in the Mallorca D.O.s there is no specific time or system – it can be months in oak barrel or stainless steel. That’s important if you expect an oaky flavor when you buy your Crianza, and then don’t get it!

Bottles Miquel Gelabert

She led us into the old concrete fermenting tanks, repurposed now as cool storage areas for bottles that are gaining their age, and told us that Vins Miquel Gelabert has three locations right now: Their country vineyard with 9 hectares planted, their small city processing bodega with tasting room, and their distribution hub where the 50,000 bottles are picked up annually for distribution. They make over 25 different labels/types/blends of wine, which is truly astonishing for such a tiny family operation, for ANY operation!

Miquel Galabert bodega

Maria told us her brother is just finishing his Enology degree on the mainland, and will be “training in residence” in New Zealand before coming back and working with their father. Maria was in training as well, but for now she is back home and focusing on family priorities. Mother stopped by briefly, and cheerfully helped us make a reservation at Toni Gelabert’s winery.  A family affair!

Miquel Galabert momma

We were told that Miquel Gelabert works mostly at the vineyard, and when the grapes are crushed and the young wines are ready for aging, they transfer it all to portable stainless tanks, and bring it in multiple trips in their personal vehicles to this urban Bodega; exhausting, but a system in place and wistful intentions of consolidating at some point. At Vins Miquel Gelabert, they hand pick all their grapes for the different quality blends; and also because some, like the Callet grape, mature unevenly and must be gone over by hand.

Vins Miquel Galabert

Next we headed to the room where they bottle, label, cork, and seal. All the machines are very small and partly manual. Maria showed us how they work and explained that as recently as two years ago they didn’t even have these machines, and did it all by hand, down to each individual label adhered with a paintbrush and glue! Artisan industry through-and-through!

Miquel Galabert bottle machine

Another vintner had fondly described Miquel as a mad scientist mixing so many blends. Nice to imagine him that way, but we saw him as the cook working on recipes, exploring the local grapes, and thinking outside the box to great effect. All very labor intensive and commendable, and luckily he enjoys the freedom to experiment without any restrictions on grape percentage requirements by D.O. Pla I Llevant (a luxury his D.O. Binissalem counterparts do not enjoy).

Vins Miquel Gelebert tasting room

Helping make sense of the plethora, Maria told us that the wines all fall into three lines as follows:

  • CAULES – everyday table wines
  • GOLÓS – medium range quality
  • SELECCION PRIVADO – top quality

and then a few Special Releases…

Miquel Galabert artistic labels

For a long time Vins Miquel Gelabert used artists to create different labels every year… (part of his mad scientist thing?)… but recently they have decided to try for bottle/brand recognition and have picked a few labels to stick with! This is another winery combing art and wine  – We are beginning to see a trend!

Finally Maria led us to the small and much awaited tasting room – and suddenly the array of wines astounded us further! Here their wines are all displayed with prices, organized across shelves spanning from white to red. Maria asked us where we would like to begin, so headily we started with the whites as we have learned to do; and goodness, are they good! She explained that their Chardonnay is unique because they have this Northern varietal in a special valley where the grapes get less sun in order to allow them to mature closer to their natural habitat. Otherwise, in Mallorca the land of sun, they often burn. Maria was very generous with her time, kind, since we had not made any reservation or given forewarning other than that last minute call of “Um… we are looking for your bodega… and we think we are on the right street, but…” She gave us a glorious tasting – please see our Vins Miquel Gelabert Tasting Notes.

Vins Miquel Galabert Manacor

Before we knew it, it was lunchtime and we had earned a good meal! Maria gave us a recommendation for cafe in the town (we wished it was at Miquel’s long-gone restaurant!) and we popped back onto the street to meet the grape-friendly sun with smiles on our face!

Directions:Miquel Gelebert Winery Map
Hidden in the city of Manacor…I hope these directins help. Coming from the highway Palma-Manacor when you enter to the town of Manacor at the first round about- continue on the highway that takes you on a loop road around the town, a left or three-quarter turn. On the following round about head into town and pass the hospital, this is a right or one-quarter turn. Go straight through the following round about and at the next, with the road, Passeig del Ferrocarril, go left or three-quarter turn. It is a street with a meridian in the middle. From here you have to keep your eye out for the little sign on the right hand side and/or the street name: Carrer de la Veroninca. It is a one way street. Then it is your fourth street on the right- also a one way street. Carrer d’en Salas. It is difficult and the outside of the building is very discrete, but it is worth the hunt to find it.

See Wines Tasted at Miquel Gelabert: Click Here

###   Vins Miquel Gelabert   ###

Ribas Winery Visit

“Passion and dedication in a coupage of creativity and unforgettable wines.”

Ribas logo
www.bodegaribas.com
+34  971 62 26 73
Consell, Mallorca, Spain

Established in 1711, Bodega Ribas is one of the oldest wineries on the island and has been in the same family for 13 generations; thus it is the oldest one-family winery in Mallorca. After the Phylloxera plague, the family went to olive products, almonds, and carob until they replanted local grapes with American rootstock around the turn of the last century. The current generation, a sister and brother in their late thirties, have completed their oenological degree on the mainland and are the new and highly regarded Ribas winemakers.

Ribas Bodega

Designated organic, Ribas has 40 hectares of vineyards (98 acres) with 160,000 vines planted approximately 2 kilometers from the estate, direction Santa María. Ribas produces 130-150,000 bottles per year. That’s almost 1 bottle per plant, which is generally considered a low yield. However, Ribas’ focus is on quality, and the oldest vines produce less volume, but great flavor. Their local grapes include Manto Negro, Callet, Gorgollassa, and Prensal Blanc. All production is done here at this beautiful historic estate winery.

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Experiencing Ribas was like falling in love. Practically in the industrial district of Consell, we followed discreet signs along anonymous inland streets until we turned into the estate, or finca, of Bodega Ribas. We have driven through this town for years, and never realized that there was a bodega here. It is a diamond in the rough. It has been the family home as long as it has been their winery, and it is rare that you get to see one of these inland empires. Clearly, it was once a magnificent country estate – until the town swallowed it up. Our French born tour guide, Sylvia, told us that – incredibly – the family still lived here up until this last decade, and all generations still meet here daily for the family lunch.

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We had booked in advance and paid for the full tour and tasting – exciting! Starting the facility and production tour, Sylvia told us that this winery is certified organic, using only natural copper and sulphur dusts to eliminate fungus and pests. August through October they go over every vine by hand as it is less aggressive than machines, includes no branches or snails, allows first selection of early bunches and elimination of weak ones. After that, the grapes are brought in 15kg boxes so no grape is crushed by the weight of others, and then spread onto a table and hand culled before they are put into the de-stemming and maceration machine. It sounded incredibly labor intensive, and yet fantastic that they want to ensure that each wine comes from the best grapes.

They use a pneumatic press, selecting the pressing pressure by grape variety. For red wines they use skin and seed during fermentation/maceration, and then press the grapes after. Rosés are pink (rather than red) because of less time with red-grape skin. Ribas wines are not sold in super markets and are mostly available in restaurants and vinotecas (wine stores). 40% of their product stays here in Mallorca, 10% goes to the mainland, and 50% goes to Switzerland and Germany. Their fermentation area is flanked with stainless tanks, and they add yeast as necessary to complete the processing of sugars in order to achieve the desired flavors and dryness.

Ribas_7-9-15_#8

During fermentation, skins and seeds rise, so they use a delicate pump to remix. Otherwise those float, known as “the sombrero,” and can mold and the ingredients aren’t available for fermentation. When ready, they lower the temperature to slow or stop fermentation, extract the wine without pressure, press if not already pressed, and go to oak barrel.

Ribas Wine

Sylvia told us that historically, Mallorcan wineries produced inexpensive wines with no oak barrel aging, no structure, to be ready in three months for the December and January village festivals. Mallorcans in the towns would come to buy “a granel” which is “in bulk,” bringing their own bottles. This is the young wine that towns still provide for the island Saints’ festivals like San Sebastian and San Antoni.

Bodega Ribas

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Then we were taken across the estate to the bodega, where they have all the barrels. This is a beautiful, peaceful place. It is an original building and has the thick 1m walls, which helps with the acclimatization. On to the tank room, Sylvia also showed us the 60-year-old cement tanks lined with red non-toxic sealant, historically lined with tile.

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These tanks are still used for certain wines and kept at 25-27° Celsius, a temperature slightly higher than the steel tanks can handle without their releasing a steel flavor and aroma. She told us that the Ribas routine is to ferment individual grape types first, and then blend wines as desired (coupage), and age in oak barrels. Over time they taste and sometimes mix further, and finally move the desired wine to bottles for final aging.

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Over all, Ribas uses 85% French oak, and 15% American oak barrels, and have them elegantly placed one on top of the other. It is beautiful to see how at Ribas, the modern mixes with the traditional; here the doors are glass and the building centuries old. They are experimenting with different sizes of barrels to see how they affect the wines. We asked Sylvia to explain to us why Ribas and other wineries choose to ferment in oak barrels from multiple countries. She told us that generally speaking, French oak comes from older trees and imparts milder flavors of chocolate and tobacco.  American oak barrels come from younger trees (they are dried artificially for timely use), are more porous, and impart robust flavor of coco and vanilla, and they allow more oxygen transference.  Who knew???? The year of the barrel is listed on its face (not the year of the wine as we had thought), so the vintners know how long it has been in use, and thus what amount of flavor it is imparting. While still in barrel, they sample the wines to check their evolution, and then top up the barrels as needed; wine evaporates (particularly in porous American oak) and a barrel must stay full to avoid oxidation. [Remember the technique used at Ca’n Pico where the oxygenation was purposeful?] A barrel’s use is a maximum of 12 years (often less). They re-use the barrels 3-4 times then sell them as decorations. They also give them to artists who paint or sculpt them in a project called BotArt that Ribas started. They feel that both winemaking and artistry are creative processes, and this is where they bring the two worlds together in a coupage

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Before we went to the tasting room, we were asked if we wanted to see the original house of the familia Ribas.   Oh, you bet.   We were shown through the home’s “entrada” (or entrance salon), which was set with tables for an event that night; and then into the home’s 1776 kitchen, still intact and fully functional. The Grandparents are the last generation to have lived here, and they still eat here every day with the family in that wonderful Mallorcan tradition.  This kitchen is a glimpse back in time to when the island was still largely unchanged for centuries, and we were in awe of its grand and traditional beauty!

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Excitingly, the “Cata,” or Wine Tasting came next. The tasting room is beside a courtyard off the fermenting rooms and offices, and we felt like we’d been taken into a secret garden! Here we saw the old barrels that have been transformed into pieces of art, the BotArt Sylvia was telling us about. We always love to see things recycled and repurposed, and creating art out of unneeded wine making ‘equipment’ is an incredible initiative. Eagerly, we sat down amid modern interiors, beside the antique patio with ArtBarrels, and the tasting began.

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We are starting to understand that many wineries have lines of wine, and within these lines are selections, generally including white, rosé, and red wines (for example the José Ferrer Winery’s organic line Pedra de Binissalem).

At Ribas their lines are:

  • Ribas – 2 whites, 1 red
  • Sio – white, rosé, red

Special releases including

  • Soma — White, 100% Viognier
  • Ribas de Cabrera – Their signature Red Coupage
  • Desconfio de la Gente que No Bebe – Red

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We were in a heat wave and Sylvia politely pointed out that to keep a chilled white wine cool as long as possible, you hold the glass by the stem to keep the heat of your hand away from it; whereas in the winter you might cup your hand around the glass to help warm and open a red.

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As we sipped the marvelous Ribas wines, Sylvia said their red Ribas Negre is very representative of the Mallorcan terroir. School in session: Terroir is the unique flavors and aromas of a wine that come from the growing environment, including soil and climate: In this case from the red Mallorcan earth, rich in salts and limestone. As example, it makes sense that 100% Cabernet Sauvignon wines would present differently (taste and aroma) if produced in the exact same way but with grapes from different terroir.

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On the tasting table were six glasses – one for each wine to taste, and crackers, cheese, and Ribas olive oil. Sylvia started by explaining a little bit about each wine, then poured and left the bottle on the table as we are given time to enjoy the surroundings and talk as she came and went.

Ribas tastingRibas_7-9-15_#25

We were very inquisitive that day and asking lots of questions. Our enthusiasm, we guess, was noted so much that we were introduced to one of the family members: daughter enologist Araceli Servera Ribas. The first thing Tawnee noticed was her shirt! It was a Pink Floyd copy, but with a wine glass instead of a prism, and their web address on the back. Ingenious!  Tawnee proceeded to ask her a question that had been bothering her forever: “I always see people sticking their noses in the wine…and I wanted to know what they were really looking for… exactly how does a person smell a wine? ”

Truth be told, as self-educators, so far we have been stabbing wildly to describe aromas. Here we confided in Araceli that there was nothing consistently, logically, obvious to us like “I detect notes of immature lowland moss and gummy bears;” and yet “experts” are confident, direct and concise. Smiling with beautiful wide eyelids like Shelley Duvall, Araceli slowed us down. She said there is a platform to start from, and in enology education they teach the first detections:  Fruity or mineral? If fruity, tropical or forest berries like strawberry, blackberry, or stone fruit like plum? If mineral, which one? Maybe iron, old vine, rain on earth? And do you detect barrel aromas? American vanilla or coconut? French cacao, licorice or tobacco? Many barrel-makers burn the barrels to eliminate resin, the scorch lends sometimes-desirable flavor, so wineries clean and choose according to objective:  Do you detect a hint of smoke = new barrel? The function of the barrel is to mature the flavors – like when pasta sauce is better the next day because the flavors have bloomed and mingled. Did we detect the balsamics of a young vine? Menthols? Etc. It isn’t a free-for-all as it seemed to us, it is a narrowing, a detection, and recognition. Tawnee made a simple aroma chart:

how to smell wine ribas

Soon the conversation took off excitingly on the subjects of grape selection, her winery recommendations, and island wine history. Somewhere in all of this she told us that many red wines in Mallorca are 14% alcohol like a sweet white; because of the amount of sun the island gets, the red grapes get very sweet, and thus it takes a long fermentation period as the yeasts consume the strong sugars before achieving a dry red. We also learned that the Ribas winery is also partly responsible for recovering other indigenous grape varieties of the island, as Gorgollassa and Escursac, which were practically non-existent after Phylloxera. Voracious and exuberant, we moved on to the topic of tannins, which before Araceli had pretty much eluded us as well. Tannins are astringent:  they are color stabilizers in wine just as in the leather industry, and lend structure or balance to flavorful wines. Young grape skins and seeds are more astringent, as is new oak; they have bitter macro tannins. Flabby structure in a wine means no tannins, or overly soft tannins (hmmm, we’ve had those wines…). Old vines, like old wood barrels, impart smoother tannins, mellower perhaps, but not considered weak.

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Everything was coming clearer. Sylvia poured, we breathed in aromas and washed flavors around our mouths… and we continued to converse with Araceli about her family, the bodega, and why she decided to become an enologist. We could see the passion she holds about wine and doing things right – she has been all over the world in her studies learning about how different wineries make their wine. What we enjoyed the most was that she took the time to hang out with us and help us learn. She was willing and positive, offering ideas and answering questions with patience. We didn’t feel stupid asking the silly things we had always wanted to know. To top things off – she then told us that the shirt she was wearing was for sale there! We both bought one!

IMG_5221 IMG_4506sm

A diamond in the rough,
overflowing glasses of good
wine and knowledge.

We sipped on as we talked, so please see our Ribas Tasting Notes for descriptions of the truly gratifying wines we enjoyed here at Bodega Ribas.

Directions:
Bodega Ribas MapOn the Highway Palma-Inca take off the exit for Binisalem, Alaro, Consell and at the round about take the ‘left’ or three quarter around turn. That will bring you into the town of Consell. Here you must  look for the signs for Bodega Ribas. Follow them (curving through the town) until you reach an estate with an entrance with sign Ribas.

See Wines Tasted at Ribas: Click Here

###   BODEGA RIBAS   ###

José Ferrer Winery Visit

“Deep rooted tradition, with modern innovation.”

Jose Ferrer Logowww.vinosferrer.com
Tel. +34 971 51 10 50
Binissalem, Mallorca Spain

The José Ferrer Winery is still family owned and run since its founding in the 1930s, and is one of the largest and most organized wineries on the island. A smaller vintner told us the family is now island aristocracy. So well established, José Ferrer is one of the primary symbols of Mallorca for wine. They have made their name, reinvested their profits, are large and efficient, and have an inviting facility for welcoming people who come tour and taste. They make wines of all grades, from young table wines to select reserves, reasonably priced and available in stores everywhere. Their current production is 800,000-900,000. bottles per year. They are registered in the D.O. Binissalem and Vi de la Terra Mallorca, and have some vineyards registered in the association of Ecological Agricultural Products. Their wines are well known throughout Spain, and as Spanish export wine. At their stylish winery in Binissalem, they offer many levels of tours and tastings.

Jose Ferrer grapes

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We showed up without a reservation, and overheard the tour guide Miguel tell the people in front of us that there was a tour about to leave; but it was a closed tour, pre-booked by a small group and not open to the public. We wandered away, looking at the vast display room, and the tour left without us. A cheerful employee came up and asked if she could help us. We inquired about the next tour, and she immediately lead us to Miguel, they spoke in Mallorquin, and we joined Miguel’s closed tour that had just begun! Another example of the nice way even large island businesses can be personal! We followed bursting with questions, but not wanting to dominate the tour that we were so lucky to get on…

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In fact, the tour was fairly formal. First, we were shown the original bodega area, with lovely old fermentation tanks painted red with a product that seals out oxygen. Next we were taken upstairs to see the contrasting enormous stainless-steel fermenting tanks now in use since the bodega’s 1990s upgrade and remodel. Their size was astonishing; we were on the second story and they still towered above us! We then toured the clean and efficient bottling plant; then on to the gorgeous old original cellars that are still in use. The main cellar is a vast room and beautifully lit. Miguel mentioned that there was a basement with more barrels below, not surprising because of the sheer volume of their production; their website says they have 2000 barrels in use!

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Here we learned that at José Ferrer, if they age a wine in oak, they generally age in bottle the same amount of time. All wines ferment first in the stainless steel tanks. Fermentation stops when they lower the temperatures, which kills the yeasts, after which time the sediments are removed. They stop the fermentation of their red wines as soon as they separate it from the skins. And the local Manto Negro varietal is the red grape they use most, by choice and in keeping with DO Binissalem requirements.

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After seeing the attractive new climate-controlled barrel rooms, we passed to where the wine was aging in bottles. Here we were told that José Ferrer makes one of the only Cavas, on the island.  So you know, Cava is the lovely name for Spanish sparkling wine.

Jose Ferrer Cava

It can’t be called champagne because the name “Champagne” is a Designation of Origin that can’t be used anywhere outside of Champagne, France. Anyway, at José Ferrer, the Cava never goes to oak, it goes straight from stainless to bottle. It is a coupage of Prensal Blanc (aka Moll), Muscat & Parellada grapes. Ok, we learned “Coupage” is a term for the blending of wines to create a new wine that is intended to be better than any of its parts alone.

Jose Ferrer tasting room
The tour moved on to a beautiful tasting room with magnum bottles lining both sides and a gorgeous long wooden table in the middle. We were told that they do private tastings in that room, but for bigger groups. We would have been delighted if we could have stayed and tasted there, the ambiance was that of Spanish Knights meeting around the table in preparation for victory.

Jose Ferrer Magnum Bottles
Gesturing to all the bottles, Miguel told us there are multiple lines of wine at José Ferrer, each include whites, rosés, and reds:

  1. José L Ferrer
    Traditional wines made the same way since their beginning in 1931
  2. Veritas
    Innovations and newer trends
  3. Dues
    Blends of 1 each Mallorcan and foreign grape varietals
  4. Pedra de Binissalem
    certified organic wines
  5. Special Editions

Back upstairs we saw rail tracks around the stairway. We were told that the rail used to come right through José Ferrer to ship their wine across Mallorca and to the island ports destined for Europe. Clearly it is one of the biggest wineries on the island, and rich in local history!

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After the very interesting tour, Miguel stayed with us and we continued our talk and started our personal tasting.  Perhaps our enthusiasm and true interest in wine opens Cellar doors for us!

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Jose Ferrer MapHow to get there:
From the Highway Palma-Inca, take the exit for Alaro/Binissalem and at the roundabout go in direction Binisalem, which is right. José Ferrer Winery is on the main road on the right hand side. There are big signs and a parking lot. You cannot miss it!

See Wines Tasted at José Ferrer: Click Here

### JOSÉ FERRER ###

José Ferrer Wine Tasting

Jose Ferrer Logo

Wines Tasted:

◊   3 Reds   ◊

Pedra de Binissalem Negre 2013
Reserva Veritas 2007
Veritas, Vinyes Velles

Jose Ferrer multiple lines

There is no shortage of wines to choose from for tasting! With five different lines of wines produced at José Ferrer, we wanted to taste them all! However, we must have told Miguel we are red-centric, because we only tasted red wines today. In retrospect, of course we should have tried a white and a rose, because it is hard to understand the full spectrum of the winery when you only taste one type. But, one really can’t taste everything as a drop-in; and we were going with the flow – as one does!

Putting our glasses beside a plate of Quelly biscuits and Mahon cheese (great authentic Mallorcan products for our tasting), Miguel poured, and we dove into a sea of red.


#1
Pedra de Binissalem Negre 2013
Grapes: Mantonegro
Cabernet Sauvignon

Jose Ferrer Pedra de Binissalem

Comment:
Tawnee: I am so happy to see that a major producer on the island is getting into organic wine! We had to try this red! It was delicate, with ripe berry tones and a distinct finish.

Merie: The first wine was the Pedra de Binissalem, Negre 2013. This deep red wine is organic, from their own Vineyard at Finca Sa Pareteta which is registered Ecological. It is a blend of Manto Negro and Cabernet grapes. They cool the bunches of grapes before squeezing, and maceration and fermentation are done in stainless tanks before following with 6 months in new American and French oak barrels. This wine has aromas of berries and ripe fruit, with the chocolate and coffee notes of French oak.


#2
Reserva Veritas 2007
Grapes: Manto Negro
Callet
Cabernet Sauvignon

Jose Ferrer Veritas

Comment:
Tawnee:  I was happy to be able to try a Reserva on the tasting list, as usually they do not open them. This was a solid wine. The name is perfectly chosen – Veritas in English means “the truth.”  It would be good served with a traditional meal of Mallorcan lamb chops, fried garlic and French fries.

Merie: Next we tried The Reserva Veritas 2007 red. Fermented in stainless, aged one year in French and American oak, then aged in bottle over two years before sale. It is made from 60% Manto Negro, then Callet and Cabernet Sauvignon. It is a very rich, almost smoky wine, with aromas and flavor of ripe fruit.


#3
Veritas Vinyes Velles
Grapes: Manto Negro
Cabernet Sauvignon
Syrah
Callet

Jose Ferrer Veritas Vinyes Velles

Comment:
Tawnee: This is my favorite wine of all that we tasted, and I like the label with the big V! V for Veritas (the truth). It is a solid wine with a good rich flavor in mouth. Vinyes Velles means “the old vines” and that is where this wine comes from – José Ferrer’s oldest vines. Knowing this adds to the enjoyment of drinking it, it is deep rooted and full of heritage and wisdom.

Merie: Finally we tried the Veritas red. All the Manto Negro, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Callet grapes in this wine are hand chosen from old vines. Held in French and American oak for one year. It is rich, with smoky almost roasted, aromas and flavor.


Here is the rub: There is some quality about these reds that wasn’t to our taste. We are wondering if the grapes are pressed too ripe, or if a short fermentation period leaves some residual sugars, or maybe the tannins are too smooth… we really don’t know. These wines are rich and robust and have a ripe fruit quality; however, there was something different about them that was consistent in all. Further education is needed!


Jose Ferrer Miguel

Thank you Miguel!

See José Ferrer visit: Click here

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