Alfredo Maestro’s family came to Peñafiel from the Basque Country. Having grown up amongst the vines, Alfredo had a great interest in wine and started making his own in 1998. From the beginning he farmed organically, yet in the cellar he worked literally “by the book,” teaching himself enology from a textbook and using all the tricks to make a “correct” Ribera del Duero wine: cultured yeasts, acids, enzymes, tannins, colorenhancers, etc. In the early 2000’s Alfredo had a revelation: as an organic farmer, why should he use chemicals to adjust the finished wine? He wanted to work as naturally in the winery as he did in the vineyard, as he puts it "to better tell the story of the land." Alfredo began eliminating exogenous products, and by 2003 he was making wine without any additives whatsoever, including sulfur. Over the past several years, Alfredo has been seeking out old, neglected, high elevation parcels around Castilla y León, and more recently in nearby Sierra de Gredos Mountains west of Madrid. He currently has several old-vine parcels of Tinto Fino, as well as Garnacha, Garnacha Tintorera, and Albillo - varieties that were once embraced in the region, but have fallen out of favor due to the fascination with producing a 100% Tinto Fino wine. He has two small bodegas, one located in his native Peñafiel where his father helps in the bodega, the other in the Navalcarnero area southwest of Madrid. He makes some of the most singular white and rosado wines in the region, and his tintos are remarkable for their purity and elegance. El Marciano is made from old-vine Garnacha grown in Navarredondilla, a village located west of Madrid in the Sierra de Gredos mountains. Due to the high elevation of the vineyard site, the grapes were hand-harvested in early October, 50% de-stemmed, crushed and fermented with wild yeasts in steel vat with 20 day skin maceration, then raised in tank over winter and bottled in February without fining, filtration, or added SO2. El Marciano is an ethereal wine with powerful acidity, red fruit, and mineral notes; a great wine to pair with roast pork. The label is a nod to the many UFO sightings in this mountainous region.
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