2013 Raventós i Blanc "L'hereu" Conca del Riu Anoia Brut
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
The 2013 L'Hereu Brut is produced from what Pepe Raventós considers a great vintage that will be considered historic in the future. That year they harvested 25 days later than the recent average, so the grapes had time to ripen slowly to perfection with a long cycle that also held acidity and the wines are very fresh. This is sourced mostly form the Viña de la Plana, which has plenty of clay on the chalky mother rock (120 centimeters below) and quite deep soils that produce wines of good freshness and balance. They also use part of purchased grapes from organic growers as their idea is to keep some 20% of grapes from external suppliers. They like to work with some of the old-timers, the local people that know and understand the zone. The wine blends the three traditional grapes, Macabeo, Xarello and Parellada and ages no less than 18 months in contact with the lees (with a maximum of 30 and an average of 24). It is Extra-Brut (five grams of residual sugar). The powerful and expressive nose is really fresh, mixing fennel, aniseed, bread dough, in a very balanced, elegant and subtle way. The palate is extremely fresh (the signature of the vintage) and balanced with amazing weight of fruit, the lees/yeasts do not overpower the fruit and the finish is very long. This is one of the best sparkling wines in its category and price range, especially in this vintage. (LG)
Green-tinged straw. High-pitched lime and grapefruit scents, along with succulent herbs and quinine. Dry, focused and racy on the palate, offering bitter citus zest, pear skin flavors and a hint of tarragon. Tighter and more linear than the 2012 vintage, with strong closing bite and lingering mineral and lime pith qualities. (JR)
Produced from nearly 100% estate, biodynamically grown Parellada, Macabeo and Xarel-Lo, this just may be the classiest, best-made brut Cava (though not labeled as such due to the estate's disagreement with who is allowed to call their wine Cava) currently on the market. From their variety of calcareous clay soils, to the careful harvesting and proximity of their gravity flow winery, both the quality of raw material and oenological know-how are abundant at this terrific estate. There is a very tiny dosage, less than 6g/l, and the overall impression here is of a very mineral, clearly delineated, chiseled sparkling wine that is truly first-rate. The 2013 vintage of L'hereu is in fact the best young bottling of their sparkling wine I have yet to try, full of bright yellow and citrus fruit, wonderful chalky minerality, a fine beaded texture and an overall sense of balance. When you taste this wine, you will see why some of Spain's best restaurants continue to feature this terrific sparkler.