The vineyards

Our research work has identified three different areas in our vineyards, as shown above. These areas are not immovable, as they may vary depending on the conditions and aspects of each vintage, but they do exhibit relatively homogeneous characteristics and personality from one year to the next.

For our new Martelo wine, we will generally use the grapes from the Martelo, Camino de la Iglesia and Las Cuevas plots (8.5 ha in all). Here is an old vineyard, more than 60 years old which was originally bush-trained and later converted to espalier. Topographically it sits on a gentle slope, reminiscent of the vineyards in Burgundy, with North and South exposure. It is at an altitude of 560-580 m above sea level.

The orientation allows the vineyard to receive sunlight from dawn to dusk. This, together with the protection afforded by Sierra de Cantabria, results in a microclimate which is particularly conducive to proper grape ripening. So, despite the altitude, this area can be considered early-ripening and fresh.
The most important aspect of the soil with regard to vine development is its shallowness (40 to 70 cm). Below the first layers, there are sandstone strata of variable depth that are usually impenetrable for roots. Low moisture retention restricts plant vigour, producing very loose clusters and small berries, both determining factors for high quality.

The chemical composition is affected by an abundance of limestone, again with a positive influence on extract, volume in the mouth and body in the final wines.
Fertility is low, due both to low nutrient and organic matter levels and to the small volume of soil that the roots can explore. This, coupled with balanced vineyard management throughout the year, makes for low yields, which do not exceed 5500 kg/ha.

In short, a very special ‘Martelo vineyard’ which is also difficult to manage, as the quality of the cultivated grapes depends largely on weather conditions throughout the growth cycle. Thus, we will only produce Martelo with Very Good or Excellent years; those that we internally identify as ‘Martelo Vintages’.

Martelo 2012 Torre de Oña 2012 Finca San Martín
Estates Martelo, Camino de la Iglesia, Altos de Vallecilla and Las Cuevas Calvo, Mazuelo and Berzal Finca San Martín (I and II) and Bajos de Vallecilla
Hectares 8,5 9 28,73
Grape varieties 95% Tempranillo (rest: traditional in-vineyard blend 95% Tempranillo and 5% Mazuelo. 100% Tempranillo
Yields <5.500Kg. <5.500Kg. 6.500Kg.
Harvested manually 20 kg boxes 20 kg boxes 300 kg boxes