Winemaker Pepe Raventos is a visionary, says Andrew Jefford. Here he shares four top sparkling wines to try from Raventos i Blanc.
Raventos i Blanc, L’Hereu 2012
Rating: 17.5/20pts, 91/100pts
Using Macabeu as ‘the structural base’, L’Hereu has classic Catalan scents of straw and dry grass freshened with a little green plum. Rounded, poised and engaging palate: both classy yet accessible and delicious.
Raventos i Blanc, De Nit 2013
Rating: 17/20pts, 90/100 pts
This elegant rosé derives its colour from the estate’s old-vine Monastrell (Mourvèdre). Scents of wild flowers and hay meadows; the palate then surprises with its firmness, dryness and depth.
Raventos i Blanc, De La Finca 2011
Rating: 17.75/20pts, 92/100pts
The developed aromas of this reserve cuvée hint at smoke, yellow fruits, hard mountain cheeses and nuts in contrast to the meadow-flower spectrum of some of the other wines in the range. It’s deep, vinous, sinewy, searching and driving after the charming and accessible L’Hereu, but harmonious, too, finishing with a walnut flourish.
Raventos i Blanc, Manuel Raventos 2007
Rating: 18.5/20pts, 95/100 pts
A blend of the best wines of the vintage by Pepe’s father Manuel Raventos. Great clarity, freshness, focus and poise characterize the aromas of this perfumed Catalan sparkler, while the palate is concentrated, drily rounded and saline. It summons up the nearby Mediterranean, the light, the dry hillsides, yet at the same time it works splendidly well as a meditative sparkling wine for drinking before or after meals thanks to its vinosity, its ripe acidity and its aromatic finesse.
Among the still wines in the present Raventos i Blanc range, look out for two Xarel-lo wines: the 2014 Silencis (apple, lemon and white grapefruit scents, with an austere but elegant palate; 16/20pts, 87/100pts) and the 2014 Extrem (a reduced-SO2 wine made with ‘natural’ ideals: equally spare in construction but with a slightly grassier and less allusive aromatic repertoire; 16/20pts, 86/100pts).