Venus La Universal 'Dido' Grenache Blanc 2016
Item Number: 28883
Wine Advocate 93
"Sara Pérez considers 2016 a special vintage that she likes for whites and rosés—wines with tension and a lower pH, as seen in the 2016 Dido Blanc. Part of the wine was macerated with skins for quite a long time, which provides for subtle tannins that are nicely integrated with the chalkiness from the soils. There's more Macabeo than Garnacha Blanca and a little Xarel.lo, with a substantial part coming from old vines that give depth and aging potential. 18,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in November 2017."
A blend of Garnacha Blanca, Macabeo & Cartoixà (Xarel-lo). This wine is fermented and aged for nine months in a combination of French oak barrels and clay amphorae. A very unique wine with extremely limited production.
Husband and wife team Sara Pérez and René Barbier (Fils) are the children of two of the great pioneers of the Priorat D.O., Josep Lluis Pérez of Mas Martinet and René Barbier of Clos Mogador. Sara and René are both very well respected vignerons in their own right, so it seemed natural that they should start a project together. For this project, they decided to stake their claim not in Priorat, but in the slightly sleepier D.O. of Monsant.
René and Sara have taken the goddess as their inspiration for this project. One of their stated goals is “to interpret femininity through a bottle of wine”. This might seem an odd choice for a bodega that elaborates Grenache- and Carignan-based wines in Southern Cataluña, but it makes sense once you taste. These are incredibly elegant, refined, sensual expressions of Montsant, with restrained alcohol levels and tremendous texture.
The grapes for the wines come from an approximate total of four hectares of vineyards which are owned by four different grape-growing families in Falset as well as another small plot owned by Venus. One could call Venus a négociant project, but it is more accurate to say that it is a partnership between these four families and René and Sara. Venus is these small growers’ only client, so their vineyards are farmed in accordance with the rigorous ecological standards set by the couple. The grapes for Dido come from the Falset area, from vineyards with soils based on decomposed granite called sauló. These soils are poor in organic matter and they contribute to producing grapes with great ripeness and fruit flavors. The grapes for Venus come from clay-calcareous soils between Marçà and Guiamets. These soils encourage a slow, elegant and complex ripeness.
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