Alvaro Palacios is a dynamic winemaker who put the Priorat region on the wine map. He also makes wine in Rioja, and set up production with his nephew Ricardo in Bierzo. Bierzo is a small region in north west Spain towards the northern border of Portugal, it is considered the home of the Mencia grape. It is one of the youngest Spanish regions, being recognised officially in 1989. We have stocked many vintages of Petalos, and it's great to have it back.
Petalos is normally made from about 90% Mencia, then topped up with a blend of six red and white grape varieties. The fruit comes from small bush vines from five villages, all at high altitude, which is typical of the region. Mencia has the light body of a Pinot Noir, and the juicy fruit, but also peppery earthy notes and floral aromas, which you might associate with Syrah. The vines are sixty years old, which have helped shape a wine with wonderful, spiced plum flavours, great depth and concentration, but isn't super heavy.
If perhaps isn't bar b q season, this would work well with anything cooked over coals. It would also match up to any rich winter casseroles.