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Los Bermejos Espumoso Brut Nature, Lanzarote, Canary Islands 2019

  • $48.00
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Los Bermejos 2019 Espumoso Brut Nature, Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain

The Canary Islands are a string of volcanic islands which belong to Spain, but are only 125km of the coast of Northern Africa. While temperatures can occasionally be high here, the fierce winds helps to keep vines cool during the growing season. Owned and run by winemaker Ignacio Valdera, Bermejos is on the easternmost island of Lanzarote; conditions here are extreme. All vineyard work is done meticulously by hand.

Winemakers: Ignacio Valdera

Farming: Sustainable

Varieties: 100% sparkling Malvasía Volcanica. Malvasía Volcanica is a crossing of Malvasía Aromatica (originally from Italy) & Marmajuelo, which is indigenous to the Islands.

Terroir:  A volcanic explosion that lasted from 1730-1736 covered the entire island in lava and ash 3-5 meters deep. Consequently, each vine must be planted in a hole or hoyo that breaks through that infertile volcanic crust of petrified lava to the organic matter that can nourish it. The wind, which acts as a natural fungicide, is so ferocious that each hoyo is surrounded by rock walls for protection. The flora on Lanzarote – including the vines – cannot grow up very high; there are not enough nutrients in the soil to support sprawling greenery. Yields are miniscule (16 hL/ha) and each berry is concentrated with flavor.

Vinification: Grapes from a single vintage, made using méthode Champenoise and aged at least 18 months sur lie. The prise de mousse used to start the second fermentation is made with Malvasía must rather than sugar. Zero dosage.

Dosage: 0 g/L

Tasting Notes: Bone dry, smoky, and with an intensely long finish, this is a unique sparkler with aromas of earth, dried flowers and bruised orchard fruits.  

From 2023 Cellar Builder Bottle Club

Los Bermejos Brut Nature, Lanzarote, Canary Islands, Spain 2019

Lanzarote is the easternmost of the Canary Islands and emerged from the ocean over 11 million years ago. Lanzarote was spared from the phylloxera plague that devastated many vineyards across Europe due to the inhospitable terroir of hot temperatures (we are only 125km from the coast of Western Sahara, Africa), strong winds, and nutrient-poor volcanic ash soil. Therefore, the vines in Lanzarote are ungrafted rootstocks that maintain the original enological properties and richness of the original vines that arrived from ancient Greece. The volcanic ashes that cover the topsoil hold the virtue of retaining the scarce water provided by daytime humidity, which is absorbed like a sponge, preventing any water loss through evaporation. Even on the hottest days, you can dig deep below the surface and find moistness, and that is the key to planting vineyards here. The vineyards are planted in large, bowl-shaped depressions, or Hoyos, that break through the infertile volcanic crust to the organic matter that nourishes the vines. The strong wind on the island acts as a natural fungicide, and each hoyo is surrounded by rock walls to protect the vines.  Due to the tough growing conditions, yields are very low, and Los Bermejos works only with native varieties of Malvasia Volcanica, Listan Negro, and Diego. All grapes are hand-picked, and winemaker Ignacio Valdera uses gentle methods, such as soft pressing of whole grapes to obtain premium juice, and using gravity rather than pumps to move juice between tanks.
Los Bermejos Brut Nature is a bubbly Malvasía Volcanica created using the Champagne method. Instead of using sugar to start the second fermentation, the winery uses sweet Malvasía juice, and it is then aged for over 18 months in a bottle on its lees, then bottled with zero dosage. It is incredibly minerally, and you can close your eyes and see the vastness of black sand dotted with vibrant green vines flowing in the warm, salt-kissed wind. The wine is salty, with notes of lemon blossom, white plum, fennel, and candied orange peel. The bubbles are tight and lively. The winery's philosophy is centered around creating a wine that is meant to be enjoyed and savored, to give you a vacation in the glass. Match with fresh summer salads, grilled prawns, poké bowls, or your favorite tinned fishies. —Cara Patricia