A very unusual red wine: from the Basque country, the grape is Hondarribi Beltza. As is traditional in the region, there’s a little spritz on pouring. Carbonic aromas on the nose of cranberry, redcurrant, strawberry, raspberry, clove, and licorice followed by a palate with very high acidity. The slight fizz adds even more vibrancy. Spicy and grainy, this is a surprising mouthful for a wine of just 12% ABV.
Stimatum, meaning esteemed, is Ameztoi’s limited red txakoli. It is produced exclusively from the local, indigenous hondarrabi beltza variety, grown on traditional trellises high on the slopes rising above Getaria, an ancient Basque fishing village on Spain’s rugged northern coast. In the 2000s, when almost all of the other local wineries gave up on the indigenous red hondarrabi beltza vines, the Ameztoi family retained their old vines, giving their wines such exceptional vibrancy and complexity. Stimatum is inspired by the historic claret-style wines which were once produced in the area before phylloxera. The backbone of the blend comes from an old hondarrabi beltza vineyard planted in 1840, preserved by the Ameztoi family for generations. The traditional style of Stimatum is true to the origins of the Getariako region’s winemaking tradition, a low-alcohol wine with a luminous, refreshing frame and the signature spritz of natural, residual CO2. It is a fantastic, natural accompaniment to the local calamares en su tinta, squid served in its own ink.
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