Illustrating The Son Alegre Grape Varieties

Monastrell

Last week, and just before the autumnal rains set in, we finished harvesting our grapes of this year’s crop. The way it looks, it has been a good year, it has to be said. At the moment, we grow six different grape varieties at Vinya Son Alegre, four red (blue) ones and two white (green) ones.

The image above shows the Monastrell grape, a Navy blue grape variety with a small and compact grain of a spherical shape, and with a distinct flavor. This grape was probably introduced to the Iberian Peninsula and Catalonia in particular by the Phoenicians around 500 BC. We use the Monastrell grape in our Sant Andreu Negre 2010 wine as well as in our Ca’n Sureda Petit Ropit Negre 2010.

Merlot

This grape is of the Merlot variety. The Merlot grape has a dark blue colour. The name Merlot is thought to be a diminutive of Merle noir, the French name for the Blackbird, probably in reference to the colour of the grape. The Merlot grape is used for our mono-varietal wines, Picarol Negre 2011 and Ca’n Sureda Merlot Negre 2010, as well as in our Picarol Rosat 2013 wine, our Es Pontàs Rosat 2013, our S’Antigor Negre 2012 (coming out soon) and our Ca’n Sureda Rosé Lucia 2012, which are all wines blended in combination with other grape varieties.

Syrah

This image shows the Syrah grape. The Syrah is a small-berried grape variety with a dark blue skin of an Indigo blue colour. The name Syrah originates from the areas of northern France. When it reaches perfect maturity, wine connoisseurs consider this grape as one of the greatest for wine. Perfect maturity is not easy to be reached with this grape. The Syrah grape is rather vulnerable; it can easily be harvested just a tad too soon or it will suffer when it is harvested a few days too late. We hope we have got it right this year; fingers crossed. We use this grape in our Sa Porta Murada Negre 2011 wine as well as in our Picarol Rosat 2013 and our Es Pontàs Rosat 2013 wines.

Cabernet Sauvignon

This image shows the Cabernet Sauvignon grape. Cabernet Sauvignon is a grape variety with a dark blue colour, almost Midnight blue, originating in the French region of Bordeaux. The plant is vigorous and well suited for warm climates with relatively low humidity. Cabernet Sauvignon is most widely distributed throughout the world among a diverse spectrum of climates. The Cabernet Sauvignon grape is used in our Picarol Rosat 2013 and our Es Pontàs Rosat 2013 wines, as well as in our S’Antigor Negre 2012 and our Ca’n Sureda Rosé Lucia 2012 wines.

We are preparing to plant vines of the Callet grape variety early next year, an indigenous grape variety of Mallorca and in particular of the Felanitx and Santanyí region. We will show you photos of the Callet grape as soon as it will be grown and ripened, probably not before 2016. Patience and victory are twin brothers, for victory comes with patience.

Malvasía

This photo shows the Malvasía grape. Our Malvasía grape is the Balearic variety of a green grape historically used to make dessert wine due to the presence of some residual sugar. The Malvasía grape is said to be of ancient Greek origin. There is also a red Malvasía negra grape variety but we do not grow that one (yet). We use the Malvasía grape for our Picarol Blanc 2013 and our Es Pontàs Blanc 2013 wines, as well as our Ca’n Sureda Blancs 2012.

Chardonnay

The image above shows the Chardonnay grape. Chardonnay is a green grape variety with origins in the Burgundy region of eastern France, giving the wine a medium to light body. The grape is small and round and acquires a melon tone when fermented. The Chardonnay grape is used in our Picarol Blanc 2013 and our Es Pontàs Blanc 2013 wines, as well as our Ca’n Sureda Blancs 2012.

Earlier this year, we planted vines of two more green grape varieties, the Giró ros grape, another autochthonous grape variety of Mallorca as well as the Viognier, a white grape originating in the Rhine valley, especially in the department of Rhone (France). We will be able to show you photos of these two grapes in the autumn of 2015. The vines are doing well at the moment; the have taken root and are doing fine, but the grapes have not developed yet.

All photos shown above were taken by our friend and collaborator, John Hinde, as were in fact most of the photos used on this blog. Thank you, John.

The texts of this blog have so far always been written by Klaus Fabricius, just in case you wanted to know.

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