Fresh and vibrant bobal from Valencia. This is the grape used for the Utiel-Requena DOP. Neither DOP nor vine are well-known outside Spain, but bobal is actually the third most planted grape variety in Spain (after airen, used for Spanish randy and the well-known tempranillo used in Rioja and several other regions). Until recently, bobal was most associated with bulk production, but in the last few years years the quality has improved greatly through lower yields and modern vinification methods. This Chaval Bobal is a fresh Joven (young) wine produced with ‘controlled fermentation at low temperatures’ according to the wine maker. I’m thinking (and tasting) semi-carbonic maceration.
Plums and black cherries are prominent, with hints of vanilla, spice and liquorice. Tannins are light and silky. Fresh and fruity, but also offering a complexity that is not usually achieved with such young, fruit-driven wines. Oh, and it’s organic…apparently. Highly recommended. Serve at 14 to 16C. A perfect summer red!