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LA BOTA DE MANZANILLA (nº 16)

“NAVAZOS”, saca of January 2009

D.O. Manzanilla Sanlúcar de Barrameda

15% alc.

Limited release: 4,000 bottles (75 cl.)

Bodega: Miguel Sánchez Ayala S.A. Sanlúcar de Barrameda

Following the same procedure as for releases number 4 and 8 in the series “La Bota de...”, this time we selected fifteen butts from the solera of the best-aged manzanilla in the house of Sánchez Ayala. The cellars of this bodega stand in Sanlúcar in the Barrio de la Balsa, between the streets called Banda Playa and Divina Pastora, in a neighborhood that’s been gradually stolen from the estuary of the River Guadalquivir and which used to be surrounded by the now almost disappeared Navazos (wetlands used for farming).

This solera is currently fed with musts sourced from two vineyards owned by Sánchez Ayala in the Pago Balbaína: Las Cañas and Viña Soledad. The finesse of these musts, together with the warm and moist climate resulting from the proximity of the sea and the freatic layer, produce delicate wines of great freshness derived from the uninterrupted ageing process under the veil of flor. In tune with the most demanding winemaking traditions of Sanlúcar, this manzanilla ages following a particularly dynamic regime of sacas (‘extractions’): a whopping twelve scales are monthly refreshed with small volumes. The average age of this wine is estimated around six years. All these factors explain the purity and typicity of its profile, its unequivocally biological character. La Bota de Manzanilla is a wine of saline complexity and power, which drinks nonetheless with incredible ease. Its personality and freshness make it the perfect partner on the dinner table, matching a wide range of foods, from the appetizers to the richest dishes (where it helps refresh the palate). The wine has been bottled after only a very light filtration in order to preserve its authenticity and its beautiful golden color, the same that shines as it emerges from the butt.

Even though there is a certain consensus about the desirability of an early consumption of manzanillas and finos, our experience with biologically-aged wines bottled by the Navazos Team indicates that proper cellaring allows them to mature elegantly after a few years of bottle age. In any case the exceptional quality of this manzanilla deserves careful treatment; we believe it to belong among the greatest white wines in the world. Equally, we suggest a service temperature around 8/10ºC and proper white wine stemware, at least, never a ‘copita’ or a tasting glass.

TASTING NOTES:

Peter Liem: "In its profound complexity, completeness, and length, it promises to surpass either of the previous editions, unfolding on the palate with a pungent, fiery energy and kaleidoscopic detail. The contrast between the sweetness of fruit, saltiness of minerality, and savoriness of the flor creates a lively and perfectly balanced tension." (en The World of Fine Wine, issue 29, September 2010)

Jamie Goode: Golden colour. Powerful, intense, nutty aromas on the piercingly fresh, almost pungent nose. The palate is broad, fat and nutty but with a lively, intense, salty, citrussy core. Very long finish. This is an intense, complex wine that's not your typical Manzanilla." (en www.wineanorak.com)

Margaret Rand: "Green olive and brine nose; silky and uncompromising palate, austere and soft at the same time. Burnt notes, olives, nuts, meat, smoked fish… A very long, earthy finish." (en Decanter, mayo 2010)

Paco Higón: “Color dorado brillante. Presenta una nariz de buena intensidad, con excelente definición y mucho volumen, expresiva, con un toque punzante, alguna sensación salina, recuerdos a aceitunas picadas, algo de almendras crudas, un ligero toque de barniz y un fondo de flor amarilla. En boca entra bien, con algún recuerdo a regaliz, denso, goloso, con una mezcla de sensaciones dulces y saldas, muy buena acidez, bastante amargo y muy largo. Ríquisimo... y muy complejo.” (en www.verema.com)

REVIEWS AND RATINGS:

Guía Peñín 2010: 99 pt 

Sarah Jane Evans (Decanter, noviembre 2010): ***** 19 pt

"Lively and intense, with a fine, savoury, saline character"

Margaret Rand (Decanter, mayo 2010): ***** 19 pt

Jamie Goode (www.wineanorak.com, mayo 2010): 94 pt

Jancis Robinson (www.jancisrobinson.com - febrero 2010): 18,5+ pt

Verema.com: 9,2 pt (media de 18 comentarios de cata, a 26 noviembre 2010)

Many thanks to Prof. Dr. Ernesto Suárez Toste 

for his invaluable help in the English version of this web

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