Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 29

his children and grandchildren, used those grapes to make
clarete, the light and refreshing traditional local red. The
wine that Sourdais produces with this vineyard is different.
Back in the winery, we taste the Dominio de Es La Diva,
a wine dominated by the calcareous sensation of its soils-
the austere structure of fruit grown in limestone-delicious
and fresh. As I drink it, I wonder what the original vineyard owner would have thought about this wine. Perhaps
it would have seemed very heavy to him; perhaps he would
have been surprised by the intense color. But he would not
have been surprised by the firm texture and the sharp acidity, details that were surely in his clarete.
Sourdais's wines have earned acclaim not only for their
depth of flavor, but also for their freshness. And, at least
in part, for his efforts to rescue the heritage of Soria's old
vineyards. "This is our treasure," he says.
Jaime Suarez, the current winemaker at Dominio de
Atauta, shares that same sense of mission. "We have a
responsibility that goes beyond obtaining quality from
these grapes," he says as we look out from the winery's high
perch, taking in the valley below with its vineyards, walnut
trees and oaks. "What we do is preserve this heritage."
Dominio de Atauta controls about 111 of the 148 acres
of vines currently farmed in Atauta. But those acres are not
orderly or continuous parcels as you would see on either
side of the golden mile in Valladolid. In Soria, the locals
speak of trozos (pieces)-small plots scattered among the
hills, often with only a few hundred plants. Dominio de

ISMAEL SANZ, DOMINIO
DE ATAUTA'S VINEYARD
MANAGER, HAS RESUSCITATED THE ANCIENT
VINES AT LA MALA, AND
NOW IS PREPARING THE
NEIGHBORING PARCEL
TO PLANT THE ESTATE'S
FIRST NEW VINEYARD.

Atauta's holdings are divided into 600 trozos.
Suarez has continued the research into Atauta's terroir
that Sourdais began 20 years ago. Today, he makes one
wine, Parada de Atauta, from parcels on sandy soil without
clay, mostly planted after phylloxera, about 90 years ago.
"What sand gives me is softness, elegance and delicacy,"
Suarez says. He reserves the Dominio de Atauta label for
his older vineyards, all pre-phylloxera, on soils with more
clay. Suarez finds that vines in the clay soils give wines with
a wider, broader mouthfeel. He also uses that label for five
single-vineyard wines, all from small plots, such as La Mala,
a parcel with 2,500 vines.
"This vineyard is known as the bad one, because it produced very little, but it has still survived," Suarez tells me
later as we walk through the vines at La Mala. The site faces
north, into the cold, the soils mainly sand and some clay, all
above the limestone rock that supports the roots of those
ancient vines. Back at the winery, when we taste La Mala
2013, it parallels the sensations of La Diva from Dominio
de Es: La Mala is pure tension and red fruits, with firm
and penetrating acidity. I imagine the original owner of
this vineyard and how upset he might have been by the
few grapes the vines would yield, but how happy for the
small amount of delicious clarete that the vineyard gave
him. "Why should we rip it out?" the grower might have
asked, as did his children and all his descendants who, for
generations, came down from the town of Atauta to harvest those grapes. n

WINE & SPIRITS

JUNE 2020

29



Wine & Spirits - June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Wine & Spirits - June 2020

Contents
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover1
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover2
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 1
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Contents
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 3
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 4
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 5
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 6
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 7
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 8
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 9
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 10
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 11
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 12
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 13
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 14
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 15
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 16
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 17
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 18
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 19
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 20
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 21
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 22
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 23
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 24
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 25
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 26
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 27
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 28
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 29
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 30
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 31
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 36
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 37
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 38
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 46
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 47
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 48
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 49
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 50
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 51
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 52
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 53
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 54
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 55
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 56
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 58
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 63
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 64
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 65
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 66
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 67
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 68
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 69
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 70
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 71
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 72
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 73
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 74
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 77
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 79
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 80
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover3
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover4
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