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Martin Sarmiento Cuatro Pasos Mencia 2013

Mencia from Bierzo, Spain
    0% ABV
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    Winemaker Notes

    Morello cherry red in color with violet reflections. The varietal aromas of red fruits dominate the bouquet with a subtle hint of vanilla from the oak toasting. The palate is elegant and balanced, with a fruit driven finish.

    Critical Acclaim

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    Martin Sarmiento

    Martin Sarmiento

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    Martin Sarmiento, Bierzo, Spain
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    The discovery of four bear footprints in a magnificent vineyard in the highest areas of the Bierzo inspired the name of this wine. Four firm steps are necessary to reach excellence: the selection of the land, the care of the vine, a suitable climate and carefulness in the elaboration.

    Four places: Otero, Hornija, Corullón y Valtuille with four different stories that define the character of their people and vines. And this is how Four Steps came about, 100% Mencía elaborated from grapes chosen from the over 80-year-old vines from the slated lands located in the high areas of the Bierzo region.

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    One of the few northwestern Spanish regions with a focus on a red variety, Bierzo, part of Castilla y León, is home to the flowery and fruity Mencia grape. Mencia produces balanced and bright red wines full of strawberry, raspberry, pomegranate, baking spice, pepper and black licorice. The well-drained soils of Bierzo are slate and granite.

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    Calling the far western appellations of the Iberian Peninsula home, Mencia was once only deemed capable of producing simple and light red wines. But post-phylloxera growers only planted this variety on low, fertile plains, which produced high yields and uncomplicated finished wines. The recent rediscovery of the ancient, abandoned vines planted on rugged hillsides of deep schist has unveiled the potential of Mencia and added discredit to its old reputation. Primarily found in the Bierzo, Ribeira Sacra and Valdeorras regions of Spain and in the Dão of Portugal (where it is called Jaen), Mencia is an early ripening, low acid grape that can produce wines of great concentration, complexity and ageability.

    In the Glass

    The best Mencia possess characters such as raspberry, red currant, boysenberry, pomegranate, black licorice, spice cake, black pepper, Asian spice and crushed gravel. Some styles remain light and fruit dominant while the more serious versions, aged in new oak, will be more complex and concentrated.

    Food Pairings

    Excellent with all manner of meat dishes: Steak au Poivre, corned beef, charcuterie, game, carne asada, etc, Mencia will also work with many vegetarian dishes such as grilled portabello, mushroom risotto, wild rice pilaf and smoked tofu.

    Sommelier Secret

    Never had Mencia? Well if you like Pinot Noir and other aromatic reds (like Gamay), definitely investigate Mencia. Many affordable options abound as well as higher-end, more complex versions. Often the latter contain other varieties for adding depth and complexity, or come from the extremely old vines.

    PHXCPSMEA13750_2013 Item# 209527