Santiago Ruiz Rias Baixas 2020

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The Brief
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The Ruiz family’s winemaking roots on Galicia’s Atlantic coast go deep. Ángel Ruiz, the grandfather of the eponymous Santiago Ruiz, was making wine here in the 1860s and was one of the first people to bottle wines from the region we now know as Rías Baixas. Santiago however was the first to market the Estate wines, selling his first 20 boxes of Vino de El Rosal to a restaurant in Vigo in 1981. Ruiz was nicknamed ‘The Father of Albariño’ for the vital role he played in the establishment of the Rías Baixas DO in the late 1980s. Today, the estate is run by Santiago’s daughter Rosa, aided by the winemaking smarts of Luisa Freire. The core vineyards lie at Tomiño in O Rosal—the most southerly of Rías Baixas’ five sub-zones—on sandy alluvial soils over granite bedrock Situated on the top lip of the river Miño (which marks the border with Portugal). The vineyards here benefit from cooling Atlantic breezes and the moderating influence and airflow from the river. Spread across exposed sunny slopes and mimicking the traditional O Rosal blend, the vineyards are devoted to decreasing plantings of (guyot-pruned) Albariño, Loureiro, Caíño Blanco, Treixadura and Godello. An O Rosal wine must contain Loureiro, and here (where the component is around 10%) the controlled yields bring ripe citric drive and blossom to the blend. The 2020 is a blend of 82% Albariño, 9% Loureiro, 4% Caíño Blanco, 3% Treixadura and 2% Godello, all naturally fermented and raised for six months, on lees, in stainless steel.
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