Bodegas Pentecostés

New Producer! Electric Rías Baixas
Bodegas Pentecostés
In the wine game, some tip-offs are a damp squib, others a slam dunk. This is a story of the latter.

Like many contemporary Rías Baixas vineyard owners, Alberto Cabaco made his fortune in Galicia’s lucrative fishing industry. Retired and with no children, he returned to his birthplace of Gondomar, a village nestled among lush Atlantic forests of the Miñor Valley in the northern reaches of the O Rosal subregion. As a child, he’d worked in his grandfather’s wine warehouse here—the kind of place where locals would fill their small kegs from larger barrels.

In 2015, the terraced vineyards surrounding the 17th-century Baroque style Pazo de Barreiro were in disrepair and divided into 30 plots, with as many different owners. Given that it is said that one does not buy land in Galicia—one bribes the owner to part with it—Cabaco must have shown tremendous forbearance to purchase and consolidate the 3.5 hectares that comprise the Pentecostés vineyard today. In seeing it through, he formed the first commercial vineyard in this valley in over a hundred years.

In 2018, Jorge Marcote entered the story. Born on the coast not even 10 kilometres west, Marcote is a young sommelier turned winegrower with a clear grasp of the principles of great wine. He had long sensed the Miñor Valley’s potential to grow the intense, racy Rías Baixas wines he loved to drink; he didn’t waste a second accepting Cabaco’s offer. Protected to the north by the Monte Castelo, this is one of the region’s driest valleys. Facing the ocean, the landscape bathes in the cooling breezes that funnel off the Atlantic. Equally important, the soils here are rich in minerals, with 20 centimetres of topsoil before the roots tap into the granite bedrock. As Marcote puts it, if he could design a terroir from scratch, it would look something like Pentecostés.

Given carte blanche to redesign the vineyard and build a cellar, Marcote first rebuilt and then replanted the terraces of Pazo de Barreiro to Albariño, Caiño Blanco, Loureira and Treixadura, matching each variety to one of the slope’s five different orientations. The vines are farmed without inputs—organic certification will follow—and a small winery was built at Mañufe, overlooking the vineyard. Marcote has installed a cold room for pre-ferment maceration, and alongside the stainless-steel fermenters are a few French oak barrels to impart complexity without masking the mineral streak of his wines. Delicate destemming, light pressing, spontaneous fermentation (rare in the region) and aging on lees form the basis of Marcote’s earth-to-glass approach.

Releasing its first wines from the 2021 vintage, Pentecostés is a babe in arms, yet the wines pack a hell of a punch. They are fleshy, structurally complex and mouth-wateringly tense—a sommelier’s delight—and far removed from the textbook stereotype of Rías Baixas. In some ways, they remind us of José Antonio López’s once-great, steely-salty Albariños from the Pazo Piñeiro in Condado de Tea. If that reference is obscure, dry German Riesling and Chablis are good markers. The wines are so good we pretty much placed our order on the spot.

The Wines

Bodegas Pentecostés Rías Baixas Albariño 2021
Sold Out
Added

Bodegas Pentecostés Rías Baixas Albariño 2021

Drawn from the granite terraces of the Pazo de Barreiro, this a wonderfully taut and racy style of Albariño with mouth-watering acidity around a dense core of fleshy fruit, with a marked salinity on the impressively long finish. Expect mouth-watering, chiselled texture, flavours of grapefruit, citrus pith and jasmine and lovely drive and energy. Oceanic Riesling? This will age and build complexity as it goes, but it’s the kind of wine that will instantly wow alongside any seafood—first class.

The winemaking for both Pentecostés wines is effectively the same. The grapes are hand-harvested and stored overnight at 10 degrees, and slow fermentations take place at cellar temperature in stainless-steel tanks, with a small portion of the harvest fermented in French oak. The wines are then raised on lees, undisturbed, for six months.

Bodegas Pentecostés Rías Baixas Albariño 2021
Sold Out
Added
Bodegas Pentecostés Rías Baixas Varietales 2022
Added

Bodegas Pentecostés Rías Baixas Varietales 2022

Of course, Albariño is the headline grape variety of Rías Baixas—and headlines sell. Yet behind the scenes, the finest growers will tell you that the region's less well-known native varieties have an increasingly important supporting role to play. The steak is good, but the sauce completes the dish. Varietales is a blend of Albariño with 20% Caiño Blanco, 20% Loureira and a drop of Treixadura. Jorge Marcote is especially evangelical about Caiño Blanco, which here brings great acidity and phenolic bite. One day, he hopes to bottle this grape on its own. Go for it, we say.

What a wine! Aromas lead you to yellow stone fruits, iodine freshness, rocks and minerals; then, spring flowers and touches of honey blossom. It is aromatically deep with lots of complexity and mineral allure. You want to dive in. The palate courses with figgy, stony extract and terrific texture anchored with bow-like tension and phenolic kick on the finish. Oh, we gonna rock down to Electric Avenue—and then we'll take it higher.

Bodegas Pentecostés Rías Baixas Varietales 2022
Added

“[Rías Baixas is] one of the most exciting areas in Europe right now, full of innovation and a wealth of exciting styles.” Tim Atkin MW

Other Recent Releases

  • Bannockburn
    Bannockburn
    Between celebrated slam dunks and fadeaways, basketball legend Michael Jordan once said...
    Between celebrated slam dunks and fadeaways, basketball legend Michael Jordan once said: “Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence win cham...

    Read more

  • Toolangi
    Toolangi
    What is it they say? Behind every great winemaker, there is a great viticulturist. The ...
    What is it they say? Behind every great winemaker, there is a great viticulturist. The recent return of seasoned viticulturist John Evans marks ano...

    Read more

  • West Coast ‘B’ Sides
    West Coast ‘B’ Sides
    We’ve thoroughly enjoyed presenting an array of wines from US growers over recent weeks...
    We’ve thoroughly enjoyed presenting an array of wines from US growers over recent weeks. Some of these are icons, others emerging stars, but all sh...

    Read more

  • Nadeson Collis
    Nadeson Collis
    As you can tell from Mike Bennie’s Freudian slip, Ray Nadeson and Maree Collis are craf...
    As you can tell from Mike Bennie’s Freudian slip, Ray Nadeson and Maree Collis are crafting some of Australia’s most original and adventurous spark...

    Read more

  • A Rhône Away from Home
    A Rhône Away from Home
    It’s Bordeaux that chimes loudest when talk turns to California, such has been the impa...
    It’s Bordeaux that chimes loudest when talk turns to California, such has been the impact of Napa Cabernet. In cooler climes such as Russian River,...

    Read more

  • Recaredo
    Recaredo
    It’s not often you come by a sparkling wine producer where the quality and unique chara...
    It’s not often you come by a sparkling wine producer where the quality and unique character of the wines, not to mention the quality of the farming...

    Read more

  • Spinifex
    Spinifex
    As one of the Barossa’s most influential figures of the last few decades, Pete Schell h...
    As one of the Barossa’s most influential figures of the last few decades, Pete Schell has been a key player in reshaping the narrative around moder...

    Read more

  • Eva Fricke
    Eva Fricke
    Eva Fricke describes the 2022 vintage as “raw and wild”. In a clear display of her natu...
    Eva Fricke describes the 2022 vintage as “raw and wild”. In a clear display of her natural talent and attuned viticultural intellect, Eva has tamed...

    Read more

  • Inside Burgundy Special Offer
    Inside Burgundy Special Offer
    Jasper Morris MW’s Inside Burgundy has been the benchmark reference on Burgundy’s wines...
    Jasper Morris MW’s Inside Burgundy has been the benchmark reference on Burgundy’s wines, winemakers and vineyards since its first publication in 20...

    Read more

View All Offers

More Content

Read more about this producer
Welcome