“Can Sumoi” Garnatxa, Sumoll 2020 – Raventós i Blanc.
Penedès. An area in the North of Spain, which lies in the shadow of the beautiful city Barcelona. But, as the sun turns, the shade changes with it! Luckily, because this is how this beautiful wine region comes into its own. And while the sun warms your back, you have a view of beautiful wine regions, among the rugged coastal strips of the Garraf. In Penedès there is a warm Mediterranean climate, but with 3 clearly distinguishable climate zones.
These varied landscapes with different microclimates allow farmers to use a very wide selection of grapes for their wines. Interesting wines are often produced in Penedès by blending indigenous and non-native grapes. There is also a great development taking place in integrated and organic viticultural techniques.
A trend that brings us to the vineyards of Pepe Raventós, Can Sumoi in particular. In this review we are discussing one of their interesting still wines, as Raventós i Blanc is mainly known for their sparkling wines. Will take a closer look at a blend of Garnatxa and Sumoll.
About the Winery
As mentioned Can Sumoi is part of Raventós I Blanc, a special project for the Raventós family. Can Sumoi is an agricultural farm with roots dating back to 1645. The vineyards had fallen into oblivion until Pepe Raventós decided to breathe new life into them. His goal? To create wines that reflect their origins without fuss, meaning organic and biodynamic and as little cellar intervention as possible.
Can Sumoi wines come from the highest estate of Penedès, 600 meters above sea level, in the Serra del Montmell: pure, authentic wines made with minimal intervention in all processes of viticulture and vinification. The estate is planted exclusively with local grapes, such as Parellada, Macabeu, Sumoll, Garnatxa and Xarel-lo.
The estate’s soil is developed from copper-colored, ochre and brown material corresponding to the Montmell Formation, which consists of sediments formed between 100 and 113 million years ago in the Cretaceous; there are few soils as old as these on the Iberian Peninsula.
The Sumoll grape is a native blue grape that originated in Catalonia, Spain. It is a large grape that is very resistant to drought. Previously, this grape was widely cultivated, but in order to grow a somewhat less temperamental variety, all the vines were uprooted. As a result, today there are few vineyards where the Sumoll grape remains. The grape gives wines with a pronounced wild cherry flavor, a mineral character and a vibrant acidity. Sumoll means “wither or ripen” in Catalan. This probably refers to its ability to develop high-quality vin de paille (straw wine).
Garnatxa, or Grenacha, Grenache and many other synonyms. A grape that loves heat and therefore thrives in the warm Mediterranean climate of Spain. They are sweet grapes with thin skins that give wine with high alcohol and low acidity. They have a full body with soft tannins and super fruity aromas of red fruits, blackberries, kirsch, fig. The grape is also resistant to several diseases and therefore lends itself well to organic viticulture. In the past, Garnatxa was mainly used for mass production of simple quality, wrongly in our opinion. After a period of large-scale grubbing, there has been a revival of honor for the grape that is potentially the “Pinot Noir of the South.”
As mentioned Can Sumoi’s mission is the production of natural high-altitude wines with low intervention, both in their viticulture and winemaking processes. The grapes are hand-picked and further processed in their cellar. They want to produce pure wines following the minimum intervention protocol without oenological or sulfur additives. Original yeasts are used.
The grapes are destemmed and undergo fermentation in stainless steel at a temperature of 22 to 28 degrees Celsius. After 15 days, the grapes are pressed. A spontaneous malolactic fermentation takes place. This 50/50 blend matures for another 12 months, including 9 months in inert tanks and 3 months in bottle.
About the Wine
The bottle is sealed with a small layer of red sealing varnish, giving it a classy look. The wine is light in color with flavors of blackberry, forest fruits and juicy cherries. The tannins are very light and soft, making it a fresh easy-drinking wine. There are spicy, slightly rustic aromas in the wine which adds some extra excitement. Due to the vineyard’s altitude the wine still has some acidity which balances it nicely. The average alcohol level (12.5% ABV) makes this a red wine that you can certainly drink on warmer days, perhaps slightly chilled.
We award this original and well-balanced wine with an 88-point DWA score. This 50/50 blend combines roughness and wilderness of the Sumoll grape with the red fruit, smoothness and elegance of the Garnatxa grape. A marriage of two varieties that nicely complement each other.
Taste date: March 2023
Score: 88/100 DWA Score
Website: Raventós i Blanc