Established in 1997, Adegas Valmiñor is situated in the sub-region of O Rosal in DO Rías Baixas. As well as this region’s famous Albariño whites (Loureiro also features), Valmiñor also grow a number of red varieties including Caiño, Souson, Brancellao and Casañal.
Valmiñor have 35 ha of their own vineyards, which contribute half their requirements, and collaborate with 100 growers for the balance (with control over viticulture, and extremely strict yield and selection criteria).
These vineyards line the north bank of Rio Miño just inland from the coastal town of A Guarda.
Rosal mixes typical Atlantic coastal granite with richer soils. The vineyards generally face south, with a warmer overall meso-climate than the pure Atlanticity of Salnes Valley to the north. The wines of Rosal are a little fuller and more tropical, more fleshy in style, but should always be graced with a line of acid zip.
Valmiñor’s prime holding is the 4 hectare Catuxa vineyard, home to 30 year old vines, wide spaced, planted on 6 foot high pergola trellises. Catuxa is grassed underneath to reduce vigor, and produces at 8 tonnes/ha, very low for Rias Baixas. Valmiñor’s largest holding, the Figuero Vineyard at 17 ha adds a unique strand to Valmiñor’s wines – it is grown on metamorphic schist rather than the typical granite of the area, and is planted on natural slopes rather than the more common terraces which break the mineral layer. When Figuero was acquired it was planted to local red varieties (Caĩno, Souson, Brancellao), some of which have been retained to make Valmiñor’s Rosado wine, but most has been grafted over to Albariño. The fruit is hand picked, de-stemmed, cold soaked and fermented in stainless tank. Fermentations are long and cool, at around 18 degrees over about 20 days. Winemaker is Cristina Mantilla. The winery is named after the owner, Carlos Gomez Davila’s home town near Vigo.
Smells of lime and prickly pear with custard apple richness and green apple tang. There is a pleasing sense of earth underneath, so it’s not just a steel tank fruit thing. Nicely controlled nutty phenolics and subtle lees richness help the fruit to achieve volume in the savoury mid-palate.
The wine is well-textured through the front 2/3 then glides out onto a rail of appley-steely acid, affecting great balance between flesh and nerve.