El Vínculo Crianza
DO La Mancha
The 2012 Crianza has savory spice and smoke accents, with notes of plum and violet in the nose. Containing rich flavors of roasted coffee, dark chocolate, tobacco and nutmeg, this wine is refined and seamless.
2012 began with a cold and dry winter and, while snow fell in the highlands of La Mancha during January, February and March were much drier than in previous years. The deluge that hit central Spain in April also affected Castilla y La Mancha, and the old-vine Tempranillo purchased by the Fernández family was released from the hydric stress it had sustained from the year before. May and June contained ideal temperatures for the proper developments of the vines, the prelude to a typically hot and dry verano manchego, or sultry La Manchan summer. The tail end of August was slightly cooler than normal, providing an excellent phenolic maturation of the grapes prior to harvest.
Lying in the warmest region of the four Fernández estates, the grapes at El Vínculo are the first to be harvested. Each of the leased vineyard blocks are manually harvested towards the beginning of September and are vinified separately. Alcoholic fermentation takes place between 6-10 days at an average temperature of 20-25°C. The Crianza is aged for 18 months in fine grain, 225- and 300-liter neutral American oak barrels with a light-to-medium toast. Barrels are racked four times during the first twelve months of aging and an additional 2-3 times before bottling. With the Fernández family dedicated to natural winemaking, all wines produced by Alejandro Fernández are neither filtered nor fined before bottling. Upon completion of barrel aging, the El Vínculo Crianza is then aged for a minimum of six months in bottle before it is released to the market.
100% Tempranillo. Acidity 5.0 g/L. Alcohol 14.5%.
While on vacation to visit La Mancha’s emblematic windmills that inspired Cervantes to write Don Quixote, Alejandro was surprised to discover 100-year-old, head-pruned Tempranillo (aka Cencibel) vines amidst a sea of white Airén grapes. Convinced he must undertake one last bodega in the historic village of Campo de Criptana in La Mancha, El Vínculo was born. By signing long-term leases with the town’s three best grape growers, and carefully controlling both the yield (50% of fruit is dropped each year) and harvest time (his grapes are harvested two weeks on average after the rest), Alejandro ensured that the Tempranillo grapes he had discovered in La Mancha could result in wines that achieve his standards of excellence.