Brezo de Grégory Pérez Godello 2019
This is a fresh and fruity blend of Godello (85%) and Doña Blanca (15%) from the Bierzo region of Spain. A few weeks ago, I was lucky enough to attend a webinar hosted by John Szabo and organized by IWEG Canada and Foods and Wines from Spain and this was one of the wines we tasted during the session. During the session, we heard from the winemaker Gregory Mengoba, who talked to us about the winemaking techniques and vineyard conditions and practices that went into creating this delightful brew. I say “brew” because the wine seems to have a wild yeasty aroma (probably a result of the time it spent on its lees and the battonage performed on it, as well as the fact that the winemaker uses wild yeast).
I’d never had a Godello-dominated blend before and was very excited to try this one, especially after reading what Jancis Robinson had to say about the grape variety. My expectations were not belied: a glass of this charming concoction calls to mind a bowl of ripe lemons, apples, pears, and fennel bulbs. These aromas are accompanied by a hint of fresh white flowers (reminiscent of lemon blossoms) and the fragrance that wafts off stones recently drenched in the rain.* The grapes are grown on several small plots (located in Carracedo, Valtuille, Villafranca del Bierzo, and Espanillo) with varying soils,* and hand-harvested at different times: once in August, and then, with respect to vines planted at a higher altitude, later in the season.
A delight to the senses, this is a young, crisp wine, that I would drink sooner rather than later. After sipping on it alone for a bit, I paired it with masala shrimp sautéd in coconut oil and spices, served with jasmine rice and homemade dahi (yogurt). The wine’s freshness and juiciness complimented the meal so well! People often pair Indian food with Gewürzraminer or a sweet Riesling, which is great, but I have recently been finding that many Spanish white wines go well with Indian seafood dishes too!
* explanatory footnote: I know, of course, that “minerality” and the role of soils in wine are divisive issues, that I am both fascinated by and still learning about.