Merayo Mencia 2018 is an inviting young red made from the lovely Mencia grape with aromas of violets, cherries, blueberries and mushroom hints. It has a smooth, cherry fruit and spice palate with ripe tannins and structure. It has been described as the Pinot Noir of Spain, and it has similar character of fresh, refined fruit, smoothness and light structure. This is something different and very distinctive in character from the widely planted Tempranillo grape found in many Spanish wines.
It comes from a small, family-producer in the hills of DO Bierzo in North West Spain, which is the home of the Mencia grape. The vineyards are near Villafranca, close to the Camino de Santiago de Compostella (The Pilgrims Way) and during our visit to Pedro’s scenic vineyards, we could see walkers making their way along the Camino! Merayo Mencia 2018 really is a wine worth discovering and it is amazing value for such a flavoursome, smooth, medium-bodied red.
The Merayo family have been growing grapes for generation in Bierzo. Pedro Merayo has 25 hectares of well established and immaculate vineyards, which includes 80 – 100 year old bush vine Mencia. This young red has been aged “sur lie” for six months before bottling. It is made from grapes from 60 year old bush vines as well as grapes from younger vines, giving an overall average age of around 20 years. Older vines produce a lower yield of grapes with great concentration, which makes for more complex wines.
Such is the care and attention to his vineyards, Pedro Merayo has observed other vignerons taking photos of his vineyards to pass them off as theirs! Attention to detail in the vineyards, hand-picked grapes and careful winemaking by the dynamic Ferrian Uria is producing excellent results. This wine gained 91 points in Guia Penin, an independent Spanish Wine Guide.
Food match: Will partner chicken and pork dishes brilliantly. Perfect with Tapas.