Oddball Wine of the Week: Prieto Picudo

Pardevalles ‘Gamonal’ Prieto Picudo 2006

Pardevalles_Gamonal_2006Producer: Vinedos y Bodega Pardevalles

Grapes: 100% Prieto Picudo – Google Translate converts this to both ‘acacia weevil’ and ‘billfish’. However, the importer’s website says it means “bunched and peaked” for the way the grapes grow in a very tight cluster and the bunches taper sharply at the bottom. I prefer acacia weevil.

Appellation: Tierra de León (DO, Spain)

Vineyards: Gamonal – a 16-hectare (about 40 acres) dry-farmed, hand-harvested vineyard of alluvial and clay soils.

Winemaking: The wine underwent malolactic fermentation in new French and American oak, then spent another 9 months in new oak barrels (50% French Allier and 50% American oak). Unfiltered.

Alcohol: 14%

Price: $19.10

My tasting notes: A dark purple color, though not especially dense. A complex nose with scents of dusty flowers, red berries and (just like it says on the back label) “fallen leaves and freshly turned earth”. It is lively on the palate, with Luden’s-like cherry and blackberry flavors predominating with an herbal and mineral edge. Modest tannins and plenty of acidity, but it maintains a nice, polished mouthfeel. It has good length on the finish. I’m finding this wine is growing on me with each sip.

Overall assessment: Not necessarily a value play at nearly $20, but a very nice wine. B/B+

Free association:

ludens

Photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bessicajach/ / CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

More info:

Only 2000 cases of this wine were produced.

This wine was rated 90 points by Wine & Spirits and Wine Advocate, and 87 by Wine Spectator.

Reviews at CellarTracker and The Spanish Table in Berkeley.

An acacia weevil:

AcaciaWeevil

4 comments to Oddball Wine of the Week: Prieto Picudo

  • Prieto Picudo is probably a Leonese or Galician name, which would make an online translator work about as well as pumping diesel into your standard gasoline car. I’ve found with a bunch of these Spanish wines that regular Spanish doesn’t cut it; a full understanding requires Basque, Catalá, and a dozen other obscure languages. I’ve run into similar problems with the Provençal dialect of French and the weird Sardo variant of Italian in Sardinia. OK, so they’re not problems, they’re like crack for a linguistics geek. ;)

  • Jim/VINEgeek

    Glad to have a linguistics geek among my readers! I’ll turn to you with future translation challenges (though Google Translate offers it’s own kind of fun).

  • Nick in DC

    Hey folks, as a native Spanish-speaker, you anglos can be very entertaining! “Prieto picudo” translates perfectly well from normal Spanish. Prieto means “dark” and picudo means “peaked”. The grape is not-very-exotically named dark-peaked. The name reminds me of “pinot noir” in that it refers to the shape of the bunch and the color. Personally, I love prieto picudo wine, esp after 2-4 years so some of the kola nut flavor calm down.

  • Jim/VINEgeek

    Thanks for the info, Nick. I enjoyed the wine, whatever the words mean!

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