The color of onion skin, Viladellops’s L.D. Ancestral Clàssic Penedès is awash in slightly oxidative aromas—opal apples and clementine give way to autolytic aromas of almond flour, granulated honey, and fine lees. On the palate, a soft open-hearted mousse crescendos, giving a creamy core tinged with pink pomelo pith and chalky minerality. from 100% Pink Xarel·lo. Crafted in the ancient méthode ancestrale, initial fermentation finishes in the bottle without the addition of liqueur tirage. 24 g/l RS, 12.0% ABV
Producer Profile: Finca Viladellops
Along the rocky spine of the Massif Garraf, a calcareous mountain chain that extends to the Mediterranean Sea, in the heart of the Penedès is the hamlet of Viladellops. The town is a tightly-knit group of 18 farmhouses—Viladellops’ history dates back to the year 958 when the order of the Templars flocked to the town under the protection of the Castle of Olèrdola. The winery, Finca Viladellops sits at the center of the town along with its 60 ha estate—a mere stone’s throw from the Castle.
Modernized in 1999 by Marcello Desvalls, the winery was faithfully restored preserving its original architectural details, and the vineyards and grounds are farmed organically. Planted in low-fertility, ancient marine sediment-rich soils studded with fossils, indigenous varieties xarel·lo and garnatxa burrow deeply into the rugged hillside parcels. The estate lies just ten kilometers from the sea, and is surrounded by scrubby Mediterranean forest and steeply terraced groves of olives and almonds.
The tempo of these wines, their inner soulfulness embodies the Massif Garraf and its climate. The winemaking team produces excellent examples of Garnatxa, and Xarel·lo that are juicy and fresh, yet underpinned by nuanced minerality. And their luminous L.D. Ancestral is a copper-hued Petillant Naturel offering pleasant creaminess offset by shimmering notes of sea foam and crushed shell.