Daniel Alba Bodegas, Yecla, Murcia
THE MAN BEHIND THE MACHINE
I'm Daniel Gimenez Alba a French engineer / winemaker from Burgundy with Spanish blood, born in Lyon in 1975. I'm a scientist by formation and an unquiet creative soul. The taste for making wine came naturally to me through the passion of my grandfather, a grower of centenary Mencia vines up North West of Spain, in El Bierzo D.O.
I rapidly embraced enology, a science where your sensations are very often more important than the chemistry and physical rules, and where experience is the best diploma.
Since I started in the wine business I wanted to create my own dream machine. To create and perfect such an artefact takes a long time.
It exactly took me 17 vintages around the world... and 8 years of microvinification of an incredible plot of ungrafted monastrell .
Eight enthusiasting vintages looking for the best vineyard management, harvesting date, adjusting blends, perfecting ageing in barrel.
And suddenly I had the conviction that I finally get what I expected, an invention that I can proudly show to the world. It was back in 2008; I named it
THE CORE OF THE MACHINE
The heart of the machine is a very special plot of monastrell from a powerfull terroir located in the south of D.O. Yecla (Murcia).
This plot is planted with ungrafted monastrell. Vines that are vitis vinifera from the roots to the fruit, there’s no grafting with american roots. That’s why some people call it “pre-phylloxeric”. In Yecla we call it “Pie Franco”.
Those Monastrell Vines are not at all clones selected in laboratories but the result of centuries of adaptation of this grape to the soils and climate of Yecla. This selection has been done generation after generation by local growers permiting to keep a wide genetical diversity.
This vineyard has been planted more than 50 years ago, a “hell lot” of time here in the devilish arid Yecla climate. This plot has never disappointed me however complicated was the vintage.