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Doniene Gorrondona Txakolina Tinto Bizkaiko 2011

T. Edward Wines, Doniene Gorrondona Txakolina Tinto Bizkaiko, New York Wine Importer

From the coastal town of Bakio, comes Doniene Gorrondona Tinto Bizkaiko Txakolina 2011, made from organically farmed pre-phylloxera vines.  Of the estate’s 12ha, these 2ha of 150+ year old Hondarribi Beltza plantings are the estate’s oldest vines.  Planted on steep terraced slopes of clay with a slate subsoil, these rare indigenous vines have been revived by a team of four who engage sustainable practices in the winery and in the vineyard. 

While most Txakolina these days is made from Hondarrabi Zuri–Basque Country’s native white varietal–it was Hondarribi Beltza that once dominated in the 19th century (pre-phylloxera).  Returning to its roots, Doniene Gorrondona is one of the few wineries to produce a small amount of this red Txakolina, vinifiying in a traditional farmhouse that dates back to 1852.

Transforming the property into a modern facility, the team also makes great use of the eight copper stills that were left behind.  By using untreated cork from certified farms, Doniene Gorrondona has extended their commitment to sustainability by also using barrels solely from cooperages who source from forests that are certified sustainable.

Awarded 91 points by Josh Raynolds of Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar, the 2011 Doniene Gorrondona Tinto Bizkaiko Txakolina is stainless steel fermented with wild yeasts.  Offering bright red fruit with undercurrents of minerality that shapes the wine’s viscosity like a river stone, the Tinto is spicy on the nose and finish.  With mid-palate salinity and mouthwatering acidity, the fruit is balanced and not overdeveloped.  “Fans of taut, linear Loire Valley red wines will really groove on this,” wrote Raynolds.  And though our supplies are dwindling, we’re happy that we can still offer this most coveted red wine from Basque Country.

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