O Rosal is the most southerly sub-region of the Rías Baixas, situated on the north bank of the river Miño, which marks the border with Portugal’s Vinho Verde. Here the vineyards benefit from cooling Atlantic breezes and the moderating influence and increased airflow from the river. The sustainably-farmed vineyards cover 38 hectares and are planted with Albariño, Loureiro, Caíño Blanco, Treixadura and Godello. Loureiro, a variety prized for its aromatic flavour profile, performs particularly well here and wines labelled ‘O Rosal’ must include this grape in the blend, something which distinguishes them from the majority of Rías Baixas wines which are 100% Albariño. Soils in O Rosal are predominantly sandy over a granite bedrock, this translates into wines with an aromatic richness combined with a characteristic wet stone minerality.
The Ruiz family has been making wines in Galicia since the 1860s. Ángel Ruiz, Santiago’s grandfather, was one of the first people to produce and bottle wines in the region. Santiago then picked up the baton and continued the pioneering spirit of his grandfather by installing the first ever stainless-steel tanks in Rías Baixas. Such was his contribution to the development of modern winemaking in the region that a street in San Miguel de Tabagón bears his name. The new winery, built in 2007, is fully equipped with state-of-the art winemaking technology and head winemaker Luisa Freire, an expert in aromatic varieties, makes clean and expressive white wines that reflect the unique sense of place of O Rosal.
82% Albarino/Alvarinho 9% Loureiro 4% Caíño Blanco 3% Treixadura 2% Godello/Gouveio
After careful selection in both the vineyard and on the winery’s sorting table, the grapes were destemmed and softly crushed. A cold pre-fermentation maceration on the skins for 15 to 20 hours was carried out to extract maximum aromatics from the grape skins. The juice was then racked off the skins and left to settle before fermentation took place in small stainless steel tanks at 16° C for 21 days. A short period of lees ageing following fermentation added texture to the palate. Each variety was vinified separately and the blend was then carefully assembled to produce the distinctive Santiago Ruiz style.
Perfect with seafood & shellfish, pasta and salads.
In the Press
Decanter World Wide wines – Silver 2022