In the national park of Sierra de Francia, on remote mountain slopes almost 3,000 feet in altitude, sits a most unusual winery: Vinas del Cambrico. Using traditional labor-intensive methods, it produces two practically unknown, near-extinct grape varieties, Rufete and Calabres. A distant cousin of Pinot Noir, Rufete was brought to the region over 900 years ago.
When Calabres was rescued from near demise, there were only 31 remaining vines, each over 100 years old. The Tempranillo clone that forms the heart of this wine came to the mountainous region centuries ago. Over time, this Tempranillo has grown more and more like Rufete, a phenomenon the winery’s owners call “evolutive convergence.”
The wine’s home slopes comprise Cambrian granite and slate, and Cambrico only uses the fruit of vines that are between 40 and 110 years old. The vineyards are plowed by horse and harvested by hand.
Source: William Sonoma