Leading Albariño producer, Mar de Frades, has launched its first 100% Godello wine from coastal vineyards in Rías Baixas, Galicia, in the northwest corner of Spain.
‘I decided to make a Godello wine because it’s an indigenous variety from Galicia, but there was little known about growing this variety next to the Atlantic,’ said winemaker Paula Fandiño.
‘Galician Godellos are produced inland, not by the sea, so I thought it would be something special.’
Scroll down for the tasting note and score of the wine
Traditionally, Albariño vineyards dominate the area, with the variety accounting for 96% of all plantings – though small quantities of other native grapes, including Treixadura, Loureiro, Torrontes and Godello are also planted throughout Rías Baixas.
Fandiño is known for her experimental approach to winemaking – including extended periods of lees ageing for her Albariños, using the Ganimede Method of cold maceration and introducing the first granite vats to the region – and saw the creation of a Godello wine as another chance to innovate.
‘Godello is a very delicate white variety, therefore, the fermentation must be at a higher temperature than for Albariño, to get fresh and more tropical flavours,’ she said.
‘The big difference compared to our Mar de Frades Albariño is the work on lees, with a long process of batonnage for six months. Then, we keep the wine on its lees for another eight months and finally it spends two months in French oak barrels before bottling. After bottling, we keep the wine for six months in the winery before releasing it.’
Launched in the distinctive Mar de Frades blue glass bottle, the inaugural 2016 vintage of Godello is already something of a rarity. Extremely limited production means that only 2,100 bottles are available in the UK and Spain.
The 2017 and 2018 Mar de Frades Godellos have already been planned for release, though Fandiño is unsure whether she has started a new trend.
‘Godello is not as popular as Albariño, and is usually blended with other local white grapes. We are the first to launch this Atlantic Godello, but maybe in the future we will see some others!’