Funking off!

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Keeping it clean with a top young Penedes talent

Eduard Pié Palomar's winemaking techniques are out there.]

Here in the Baix Penedès along Spain's Catalan coast, he uses local varieties from single vineyards, fermenting all his wines with wild yeast in terra cotta amphorae. Some amphorae are sunk in the ground between vineyard rows, where they spend the winter under rain, snow and grazing sheep.

"It's a romantic concept," says the fresh-faced, 29-year-old winemaker, who calls his vineyard-made wines "liquid terroir."

Similar "romantic concepts" often make something called vinegar.

Here's the amazing thing about Pié Palomar: In these raw circumstances, he makes limpid, pristine wines with none of the oxidation, funk, murk or abundance of volatile acidity you might expect. "I am very strict with the wines I sell under my brand," he says.

Pié Palomar works in and around his hometown of Bonastre, a sleepy village perched in the Bonastre mountain massif about three miles inland from the Mediterranean coast and an hour southwest of Barcelona.

Now in the seventh vintage of his wine label Sicus Terrers Mediterranis, Pié Palomar is recognized as a top young talent of Penedès... Read the full blog at the wine spectator.