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Bodegas Itsasmendi Eklipse 2016

Wine Type: Large_icon Large_icon
Style of Wine:Earthy & Spicy
Country of Origin:Spain
Wine Region:Basque Country
Appellation:Biscayan Txakoli
Grape Varietal:Pinot Noir and Hondarribi Beltza
Bottle Format:750mL
Case Size:6 bottles
$272.40 Per Case ($45.40/btl)

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Tasting Notes

The traditions of growing grapes and making wine in the Basque region of Bizkaia date back thousands of years. Early vineyards were located near the coastal towns of Bilbao, Lekeitio, Ondarroa, and Gernika, to supply the local demand for wine. The first references to “txakoli” date to the 17th century, but it is only in the latter half of the 20th century that the regional wines started to make their mark. The DO was created in 1994.

Bodegas Itsasmendi (means sea and mountains) was established in 1995, with approximately 27ha vineyards planted in 1989, and which has now expanded to 35ha, in 15 different sites covering 9 separate municipalities. The vineyards are uniquely sheltered from the north winds and planted in such a way as to maximize exposure to sunlight, and each site has a unique soil composition and microclimate. Modern winemaking techniques result in bright, fresh wines, full of personality and richness. Winery capacity is 250,000 bottles, but current production is less than half.

This rare red Txakoli (pronounced chak-oh-lee) of Itsasmendi is made from a blend of Pinot Noir (65%) and an indigenous Basque grape called Hondarribi-Beltza (pronounced on-dar-ee-bee belt-za), from vines over 20 year old in two small plots.

Eklipse has a unique varietal personality; much of which comes from the influences of the Cantabrian Sea which is only a few kilometers away, the age of the vines, plus the predominantly limestone and clay-loam soils. The plots - 1 Ha (in Gorliz) on the coast of Bicay and .75 Ha in Muskiz - are also surrounded by an ancient Cantabrian Holm oak grove. Average annual rainfall in the area is around 931mm.

Fermentation took place in temperature-controlled stainless steel conical tanks to retain the fresh aromatics of the grape, and then the wine is aged for 10 months in a 2,000 litre French oak vat, to add structure and complexity. Malolactic fermentation took place in the wooden vat. 13.5% alc./vol.

Our tasting note: Deep, bright, ruby red colour. Complex aromas and flavours of blueberry, raspberry, and strawberry, and with slight floral (violets), underbrush, and mineral notes. Balanced acidity, medium body and tannins, and a clean elegant finish.

Critical Praise


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