Forjas del Salnes Muti Albarino
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Rias Baixas, Spain
In the 1970s, most vintners in Rías Baixas were pulling up their old red grapevines to make way for the more productive, more en vogue, Albariño. Thankfully, the Méndez family was doing the exact opposite, planting more traditional vines, such as Caiño, Espadiero and Loureiro Tinto, in a successful attempt to preserve and revive this central element of Galician heritage.
This mission of preservation was kick-started in earnest during the early years of the 21st Century when Rodrigo Méndez and respected winemaker Raúl Pérez joined forces to produce not just some of the most astonishing Albariño available, but also the rare Galician reds that just a century beforehand were the pride of the region. Using traditional methods learnt over generations, Forjas del Salnés was born in a garage winery in 2005 and named after the ironworks set up by his grandfather, Francisco Méndez. Here they work the fruits from just 7.5 hectares of vines, grown in the villages of Meaño, Sanxenxo and Barro. Muti Albariño was conceived as a tribute to Patrick Mata’s (co-owner of Ole Imports) mother Christiane, with whom he spoke German at home – “Muti” means “Mom” in German.