Los Bermejos is a winery based on the island of Lanzarote. Only 125 km from the African coastline, conditions here are quite dramatic. In 1730 the island was covered with thick black lava and ash from a month intense volcanic eruption The porous, black volcanic soils exhibit high drainage, sucking down the water content of the soil that receive just a minimal amount of rain per year. Actually, Lanzarote brings to mind a bit Santorini.
The winds that originate from the Sahara desert and the Atlantic Ocean are so strong that each vine is planted in small hole or hoyo, and in addition enclosed with a stone wall. The hole permits the vines to more quickly reach the organic matter located beneath the top layer of solidified lava. Virtually no vegetation can survive such inhospitable soil.
Bodegas Bermejo practices organic viticulture and they are in the process of getting their certification. They also make a brut, a sweet Malvasia and apparently a magnificent rose from Listan Negro. However, I could only get my hands at the dry version of the Malvasia.
Bermejo Malvasia Seco Lanzarote Joven 2015. $25.65. SAQ # 12951102
This is a 100% stainless tank aged Volcanic Malvasía. Crisp, bright with intriguing citrus and mineral notes. Smooth with notes of dry herbs and peaches. Very long and aromatic finale. Food Idea: It could go well with seafood such as octopus, steamed clams or oysters. Here is an interesting recipe from Galicia in which Octopus is cooked with rosemary and potatoes. The rosemary in the dish could complement well the dry herbal notes of the wine.
Bodegas El Grifo is one of the top ten oldest Spanish producers. It was founded in 1775, making it the oldest of the Canary Islands.The winery has a bit over 50 ha of vineyards that include malvasía, listan negro and moscatel. Other varieties include listán blanca, burrablanca, breval or pedro ximénez.
Due to the extreme geographical characteristics of Lanzarote, harvesting is manual and El Grifo production counts for 30% of the island output.
El Grifo Listan Negro 2014. SAQ Code: 12910634. $26.70
Bright cherry red with violet undertones. On the nose, aromas of red fruits, minerals with lactic nuances. On the mouth, very fresh, smooth with candied fruit notes. Supple tannins with a good persistence in the mouth. This is my go wine with a nice plate of jamon, manchego cheese, olive oil and bread.