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CAN RAFOLS SUMOLL 2015 75cl

18,25 € tax incl.

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Can Rafols Sumoll.

 

The Project.

 

In 1979, Carlos Esteva decided to go and live on his grandfather’s country estate, Can Ràfols dels Caus. After buying out the shares of his brother and sister, he embarked on the slow process of restoring the old building, which was in a semi-derelict condition. 

At the same time, he regenerated the farming of the vineyards by introducing new varieties and planting methods (trellising), placing his bets on the viability of producing wines entirely on the estate, and making wines with a distinct character so as to establish the name of the estate as a mark of unreserved quality. 

Carlos Esteva was one of the few wine growers who lived on the estate, fighting to achieve his goals within a framework of sustainability and out of respect for the natural heritage of the countryside and architectural heritage of the buildings.


The Land.


The Garraf Massif is a great mass of limestone which rises up between the Pre-Coastal mountain range, the Sierra of Ordal, the Garraf, Mediterranean and coastal plains. It is a series of high hills – some of them rising to an altitude of more than 500m – with gradients of between 30% and 50%, with narrow watercourses and gullies slicing deeply into the landscape. All of this means that the amount of arable land is limited.


Montainous Terrain.


The Garraf wine-growing region is a protected area within the traditional boundaries of the Garraf National Park. The Can Ràfols dels Caus estate is situated at an altitude of 300 m, and stands on a rise between the ravines of two watercourses surrounded by vineyards growing on the terraced slopes. From some of the highest vineyards, such as “la Calma” or “el Rocallís” the sea can be seen, some 15km away. This situation is paramount for obtaining healthy grapes, as they are sheltered from the damp air coming in from the coastline, but are equally protected from the sporadic hailstorms in the Sierra of Ordal or the Pre-Coastal mountain range.


Climate.


The Garraf Massif has an unusual mesoclimate. The daytime is sun-drenched and hot despite the tempering effect of the sea, which sends in a cooling breeze towards the afternoon. This allows the vines to complete their growth cycle and reach full ripeness. Within a predominantly dry Mediterranean climate, the temperatures around the final period of ripening can average 24°C, with highs of 38°C and lows of 14°C, providing an extended period for ripening and allowing the sugar concentration and polyphenolic maturity to be reached gradually. Consequently, the more fragrant and subtle aromatic molecules can develop. Rainfall is scarce, with 350 litres per square metre during the growth period.


Vegetation.


Small bushes and intensely aromatic shrubs such as thyme, rosemary, pennyroyal mint and marjoram thrive in this area. It is not surprising, therefore, that traces of these herbal aromas can often be detected in the wines of Can Ràfols dels Caus. 

A protected species which is endemic to the area is the dwarf palm (chamaerops humilis), and evergreen oaks and oak trees grow in the ravines and riverbank trees make a rare and shy appearance to reveal the unusual presence of a natural spring. Vineyards, olive groves and almond orchards occupy the small clearings between the pine woods.


Soil.


The soil is made up of Dolomitic limestone, which overlies strata of Dolomitic stone, white, blue and pink clay. The area is a watershed, carved by riverbed ravines, gullies, caves and potholes. The shallow topsoil is only about 40cm deep and contains up to 40% of quick lime, something which considerably limits productivity. Due to the marine origins of the area, fossils are not at all uncommon, and many can be found in the soil of the higher vineyards such as “la Calma” or “el Rocallís”. 

Most of the soil on the estate is calcareous or “white” or is of the local and plentiful variety of clay which is peppered with lime nodules known as “cat’s brains”. The presence of such a high proportion of fossil matter provides a wealth of microelements and minerals that are absorbed by the plants, and lend a unique personality to the wines. In all great wines of notable character, there is a predominance of calcareous soil, which increases the wine’s potential to age well, holding its acidity and maintaining a clear profile.


Cellar.


Philosophy.


The philosophy of Can Ràfols dels Caus centres on doing things well. We believe that to make great wine you need good grapes, balanced vineyards and appropriate production methods which enable the grapes to ripen correctly. We make every effort to allow Nature to do its work.


Vineyards.


Only 50 hectares of this 455-hectare estate are vineyards, 2 hectares being used for olive groves, 1 hectare for almond orchards and the rest for woodland, scrubland and rocky terrain. The size of the single vineyards ranges from 0.15 hectares (the smallest) to 2 hectares (the largest). We only plough the land in winter to ventilate the soil, and we allow a certain amount of grass to grow in the vineyard to enhance the retention of moisture and presence of Nitrogen, in order to fix what little soil we have, as well as encouraging the proliferation of earthworms, insects and other beneficial life forms. We prune short, leaving only the fruiting buds that the vine will be able to mature successfully. We do not use any insecticides, and as a result, have a healthy population of native insects which regulate possible attacks and blights. We carry out our green pruning toward the end of spring and full leaf pruning at the end of summer. We harvest our grapes by hand and it takes the grapes just 15-20 minutes to reach the cellar from the vineyard following harvesting, thus avoiding any unwanted oxidation, bruising or uncontrolled fermentation.


Cultivation.


We believe that it is vital to protect our ancient culture and natural habitat by respecting and improving our surroundings, and searching for equilibrium to produce the best wines possible. We use arid-farming methods without any irrigation and we adjust our production levels to balance out the amount of wine we make from the vineyards. We use natural farming methods: the small amount of manure we use is organic, 25% of the grapes are grown on the bush and the rest are trellised high to gain the maximum leaf exposure to the sun. We sulphur dust the vineyards only when necessary and use only the minimum amount of phyto-sanitary products in cases of extreme necessity. We carry out green pruning, harvest the grapes by hand and select the healthy grapes directly from the vine.


Winemaking.


Besides healthy grapes, to make a great wine you need a combination of intuition, good taste and experience to make the crucial decisions regarding the wine’s production, storage and aging. Just like an artist when he decides what to do with his colours. We do not chaptalize our wines, nor do we use selected yeasts. What is essential in winemaking is to get the most out of the vine, thereby allowing the quality of the grapes and the production methods to speak for themselves, without using any additives. Every grape-picking season is a new adventure for the wine grower, and just as no two seasons are the same, no two wines are alike. At Can Ràfols dels Caus, we have experimented extensively with different wines and grape varieties, striving to make wines with good aging potential. In keeping with our personal taste, we tend toward the creation of create fine wines, which are natural, elegant, and with a marked personality, simultaneously embodying the expression of the fruit, the land and man’s intervention.


Cellar.


Can Ràfols dels Caus has always been a forerunner and trend-setter, and some twenty-five years after starting his wine venture, Carlos Esteva decided to take a giant step forward by building a new cellar. The aim was not to squeeze in more vats, barrels and bottles, but to work better. With this project, the winery’s potential for producing quality wines has multiplied, as the cellar is now geared to promoting micro-vinifications, separating batches even more and research. We have designed a cellar which has been completely carved out of the Dolomitic limestone of the Garraf, invisible from above ground and totally integrated into the landscape. It boasts a vast vinification and micro-vinification hall, and a barrel/aging chamber to enable close monitoring of the entire process. The new cellar was built on different levels to enable decantation by gravity. We have vats of different capacities to allow us to vinify batches separately according to the vineyards where they come from, the age of the vines, the ripening stage and type of grape, etc. This means that we can make wines which have been aged for a long time in the bottle, gently enhancing the development of complex aromas and avoiding the hyper-oxidations which have become so fashionable.


The Project.

 

In 1979, Carlos Esteva decided to go and live on his grandfather’s country estate, Can Ràfols dels Caus. After buying out the shares of his brother and sister, he embarked on the slow process of restoring the old building, which was in a semi-derelict condition. 

At the same time, he regenerated the farming of the vineyards by introducing new varieties and planting methods (trellising), placing his bets on the viability of producing wines entirely on the estate, and making wines with a distinct character so as to establish the name of the estate as a mark of unreserved quality. 

Carlos Esteva was one of the few wine growers who lived on the estate, fighting to achieve his goals within a framework of sustainability and out of respect for the natural heritage of the countryside and architectural heritage of the buildings.


The Land.


The Garraf Massif is a great mass of limestone which rises up between the Pre-Coastal mountain range, the Sierra of Ordal, the Garraf, Mediterranean and coastal plains. It is a series of high hills – some of them rising to an altitude of more than 500m – with gradients of between 30% and 50%, with narrow watercourses and gullies slicing deeply into the landscape. All of this means that the amount of arable land is limited.


Montainous Terrain.


The Garraf wine-growing region is a protected area within the traditional boundaries of the Garraf National Park. The Can Ràfols dels Caus estate is situated at an altitude of 300 m, and stands on a rise between the ravines of two watercourses surrounded by vineyards growing on the terraced slopes. From some of the highest vineyards, such as “la Calma” or “el Rocallís” the sea can be seen, some 15km away. This situation is paramount for obtaining healthy grapes, as they are sheltered from the damp air coming in from the coastline, but are equally protected from the sporadic hailstorms in the Sierra of Ordal or the Pre-Coastal mountain range.


Climate.


The Garraf Massif has an unusual mesoclimate. The daytime is sun-drenched and hot despite the tempering effect of the sea, which sends in a cooling breeze towards the afternoon. This allows the vines to complete their growth cycle and reach full ripeness. Within a predominantly dry Mediterranean climate, the temperatures around the final period of ripening can average 24°C, with highs of 38°C and lows of 14°C, providing an extended period for ripening and allowing the sugar concentration and polyphenolic maturity to be reached gradually. Consequently, the more fragrant and subtle aromatic molecules can develop. Rainfall is scarce, with 350 litres per square metre during the growth period.


Vegetation.


Small bushes and intensely aromatic shrubs such as thyme, rosemary, pennyroyal mint and marjoram thrive in this area. It is not surprising, therefore, that traces of these herbal aromas can often be detected in the wines of Can Ràfols dels Caus. 

A protected species which is endemic to the area is the dwarf palm (chamaerops humilis), and evergreen oaks and oak trees grow in the ravines and riverbank trees make a rare and shy appearance to reveal the unusual presence of a natural spring. Vineyards, olive groves and almond orchards occupy the small clearings between the pine woods.


Soil.


The soil is made up of Dolomitic limestone, which overlies strata of Dolomitic stone, white, blue and pink clay. The area is a watershed, carved by riverbed ravines, gullies, caves and potholes. The shallow topsoil is only about 40cm deep and contains up to 40% of quick lime, something which considerably limits productivity. Due to the marine origins of the area, fossils are not at all uncommon, and many can be found in the soil of the higher vineyards such as “la Calma” or “el Rocallís”. 

Most of the soil on the estate is calcareous or “white” or is of the local and plentiful variety of clay which is peppered with lime nodules known as “cat’s brains”. The presence of such a high proportion of fossil matter provides a wealth of microelements and minerals that are absorbed by the plants, and lend a unique personality to the wines. In all great wines of notable character, there is a predominance of calcareous soil, which increases the wine’s potential to age well, holding its acidity and maintaining a clear profile.


Cellar.


Philosophy.


The philosophy of Can Ràfols dels Caus centres on doing things well. We believe that to make great wine you need good grapes, balanced vineyards and appropriate production methods which enable the grapes to ripen correctly. We make every effort to allow Nature to do its work.


Vineyards.


Only 50 hectares of this 455-hectare estate are vineyards, 2 hectares being used for olive groves, 1 hectare for almond orchards and the rest for woodland, scrubland and rocky terrain. The size of the single vineyards ranges from 0.15 hectares (the smallest) to 2 hectares (the largest). We only plough the land in winter to ventilate the soil, and we allow a certain amount of grass to grow in the vineyard to enhance the retention of moisture and presence of Nitrogen, in order to fix what little soil we have, as well as encouraging the proliferation of earthworms, insects and other beneficial life forms. We prune short, leaving only the fruiting buds that the vine will be able to mature successfully. We do not use any insecticides, and as a result, have a healthy population of native insects which regulate possible attacks and blights. We carry out our green pruning toward the end of spring and full leaf pruning at the end of summer. We harvest our grapes by hand and it takes the grapes just 15-20 minutes to reach the cellar from the vineyard following harvesting, thus avoiding any unwanted oxidation, bruising or uncontrolled fermentation.


Cultivation.


We believe that it is vital to protect our ancient culture and natural habitat by respecting and improving our surroundings, and searching for equilibrium to produce the best wines possible. We use arid-farming methods without any irrigation and we adjust our production levels to balance out the amount of wine we make from the vineyards. We use natural farming methods: the small amount of manure we use is organic, 25% of the grapes are grown on the bush and the rest are trellised high to gain the maximum leaf exposure to the sun. We sulphur dust the vineyards only when necessary and use only the minimum amount of phyto-sanitary products in cases of extreme necessity. We carry out green pruning, harvest the grapes by hand and select the healthy grapes directly from the vine.


Winemaking.


Besides healthy grapes, to make a great wine you need a combination of intuition, good taste and experience to make the crucial decisions regarding the wine’s production, storage and aging. Just like an artist when he decides what to do with his colours. We do not chaptalize our wines, nor do we use selected yeasts. What is essential in winemaking is to get the most out of the vine, thereby allowing the quality of the grapes and the production methods to speak for themselves, without using any additives. Every grape-picking season is a new adventure for the wine grower, and just as no two seasons are the same, no two wines are alike. At Can Ràfols dels Caus, we have experimented extensively with different wines and grape varieties, striving to make wines with good aging potential. In keeping with our personal taste, we tend toward the creation of create fine wines, which are natural, elegant, and with a marked personality, simultaneously embodying the expression of the fruit, the land and man’s intervention.


Cellar.


Can Ràfols dels Caus has always been a forerunner and trend-setter, and some twenty-five years after starting his wine venture, Carlos Esteva decided to take a giant step forward by building a new cellar. The aim was not to squeeze in more vats, barrels and bottles, but to work better. With this project, the winery’s potential for producing quality wines has multiplied, as the cellar is now geared to promoting micro-vinifications, separating batches even more and research. We have designed a cellar which has been completely carved out of the Dolomitic limestone of the Garraf, invisible from above ground and totally integrated into the landscape. It boasts a vast vinification and micro-vinification hall, and a barrel/aging chamber to enable close monitoring of the entire process. The new cellar was built on different levels to enable decantation by gravity. We have vats of different capacities to allow us to vinify batches separately according to the vineyards where they come from, the age of the vines, the ripening stage and type of grape, etc. This means that we can make wines which have been aged for a long time in the bottle, gently enhancing the development of complex aromas and avoiding the hyper-oxidations which have become so fashionable.


  • Añada 2015
  • Reference S011311807B5