Tempranillo from Rioja, Spain
The 2011 El Carretil is produced with Tempranillo grapes from a single 5.3-hectare, southeast-facing vineyard planted in 1973 in Laguardia at 500 meters altitude. The grapes fermented in open wooden vats and carried out the malolactic fermentation in oak barrels, where it aged for 14 months. There’s fennel and licorice, it has some grainy tannins, vibrant acidity and some overall austerity. Here the soil speaks quite clearly, and tends to soften the differences between vintages. Drink 2015-2024.I tasted Artadi’s 2010s and 2011s, as they seem to be selling the new vintages very fast and they even sell part of their wines en primeur. 2010, 2011 and 2012 have been very dry years. I didn’t have the chance to taste any 2012s, but I look forward to doing so the next time around. 2011 seems to be more fruit forward, more primary, without the complexity and depth of the 2010s, which were very elegant and is a superb vintage for Artadi. There are differences in texture between the two years, 2010 being more gentle, rounder and silkier and 2011 a bit wilder with a touch of rusticity. When it comes to production methods, only Tempranillo is used (except for the white which is produced exclusively with Viura), they destemmed all the grapes, the press wine never makes it into the final blends, and they only use French oak barrels.