Sketch - Ole Imports

Sketch, by Raúl Perez, is a single barrel production wine coming from a vineyard planted in 1972.
From the very first vintage in 2003, Sketch gained immediate notoriety for being aged underwater.
While Raúl continues to age several hundred bottles per year underwater for research purposes and
tasting, the Sketch that is commercially available is aged above sea level. This vineyard's proximity
to the Atlantic Ocean (150m), combined with the granite soil composition and Raul's unorthodox
winemaking approach, result in an expression of Albariño unlike any other on earth. In this
vineyard planted right next to the ocean, the wind and ocean spray allow salt to collect on the skin
of the grapes, which imbues the wine with an unmistakable salinity. This mineral profile lends
Sketch its sense of place this wine could come from nowhere else in the world. Sketch is also
unique from a winemaking standpoint. Raul allows the fruit to hang for almost a month longer than
is the norm in Rias Baixas. Because this wine won't go through malolactic fermentation, Raul
believes that this extra hang time helps to balance the acidity in this wine, in addition to lending
profound concentration and richness.
WHAT MAKES THIS WINE UNIQUE?: This is a single vineyard wine made from vines planted in 1972. The vineyard is
just 150 meters away from the Atlantic Ocean. The soil here is solid granite. This wine is aged in 750-liter French oak
barrels, seven years old.
RATING HISTORY: 2014 92WA; 2013 93WA& Vinous; 2012 93IWC; 2011 93IWC; 2010 93IWC; 2009 96RP; 2008 95RP;
2006 93RP
GRAPE: 100% Albariño. Single vineyard planted in 1972. Tended in granite and sandy soil. Located in in the town of Dena,
150 m (492 ft) from the Atlantic ocean.
PAIRING SUGGESTIONS: This wine's immense structure requires some time open or in a decanter before it unwinds.
This remarkable Albariño has high-pitched aromas of lemon and talc with an unmistakable saline note. Similar to the
aromas, the wine's flavors are incredibly packed and concentrated on the palate, with huge, squeaky-clean flavors of
minerals, citrus, and fresh stone fruits and their skins. In character and palate presence, this easily recalls a Montrachet,
Batard Montrachet or fine Chablis from Raveneau or Dauvissat. The wine shows intense power with depth and finesse.
Pair this with simply prepared cockles, shrimp, razor clams, oysters or a nicely seared piece of yellowfin tuna.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING: The must is macerated for 24 hours in a stainless steel tank. Fermentation and post
fermentation maceration is carried out in 750-liter French oak barrels, that are seven years old, for 12 months. Because
the grapes already contain near-ideal acidity, there's no malolactic fermentation. Raul aged both 2002 and 2003 vintages
underwater. Today, some lots of Sketch are aged underwater on an experimental basis, but Raul is very selective with this
process since a large percentage of one year's production was spoiled. This process has helped Raul understand how a
lack of oxygen during elevage helps Albarino age well.
PRODUCTION: 150 cases (3 pack)
LOCATION, SOIL, CLIMATE: The vineyards are located within the Rías Baixas DO region (Zone 1), in the Val do Salnes
subzone. Located in Spain's upper northwest corner, Rías Baixas is just above the Portuguese border. Rías Baixas means
'low estuaries,' a reference to the area's many rivers that lead to the ocean. Sketch comes from a single vineyard that is
located in the town of Dena, 150 meters from the Atlantic ocean.
Sketch is usually harvested one to two weeks later than all other vineyards in the area because for Sketch, Raul prefers
grapes with less water and higher acidity. The vineyard's close proximity to the ocean adds an interesting saline element to
the wine. The vineyard's soil is composed of fine, powdery sand atop solid granite bedrock, which imparts an identifiably
pronounced mineral character. This area's climatic conditions give this wine a definite “Atlantic” character. Of the 5
subzones in Rías Baixas, Val do Salnes is the coolest due to the proximity of the Atlantic Ocean.
Yearly rainfall is above 1,700 millimeters (66 inches) or what one would expect in one of the wettest regions in Spain. The
area is quite foggy with an average temperature from April-October of 63.4'F.
TASTING NOTES Expressive, orchard fruit, honey and mineral aromas pick up hints of quinine and white flowers with air.
Bitter pear skin and Meyer lemon flavors gain weight, with the wine maintaining vivacity and focus thanks to juicy acidity.
Closes on a tangerine note, with serious, mineral-driven thrust and lingering floral character.
UPC CODE: 810411013441