One of Roberto Oliván’s entry-red wines sourced from vineyards in Viñaspre, Xérico aims to reflect the style of the wines traditionally drunk at home in Rioja. The label pays tribute to a different member of the family each vintage with 2016 being devoted to Roberto’s mother Vicenta. Around 20% of the grapes in the blend are white, adding lots of freshness to this fruit-forward (blackberries, cherries, violets) red offering good tension on the palate. Easy to drink but also pure and precise.
Producued from tempranillo co-fermented with a hefty 20% chunk of Viura, from vines inherited from his grandfather, Roberto Olivan's Xerico is yet another example of modern day Rioja looking back to its roots, producing something wholly original and delicious in the process. Fermented and aged in a combination of concrete and chestnut foudre for five months, this red shows savory dark fruits, a somewhat farmy though fresh aromatic profile, and an overall character marked by a natural wine informed approach. Do not expect rich fruit or generous, spicy oak driven note. Do saddle up for a fairly wild ride. Natural wine fans and Rioja completists alike, giddy up. *Natural Wine*