A fresh red wine from the dramatic granite slopes of the Miño river
- Producer: Atlantic Galician Wineries
- Region: DO Ribeira Sacra
- Vintage: 2020
- ABV: 12.5%
- Grape: Mencía | Sousón
Massimo is a Spanish red wine with a difference. A blend of Mencía and Sousón grapes, it's a wonderful young red wine that’s light, delicate, and easy to drink. Cherry red with a violet rim, the nose is brimming with delicious aromas of red and tropical fruits, with slightly bready undertones from the time the wine spends on its lees.
Blue Fish, Pasta Dishes, Cured Meats
More about Massimo
Who makes it
Half Italian, half Galician, Benedetto Carcieri has spent a lot of his working life travelling Spain and the world selling wines from Galicia, specifically from Denominación de Origen Ribeiro. Like many of his colleagues in the wine trade, all that energy and enthusiasm spent selling wine led him one day to the conclusion that the next logical step was to make his own wine.
Starting with just a few hectares of his own, Benedetto and the Atlantic Galician Wineries project has slowly expanded and now encompasses three of Galicia’s most celebrated appellations: the well-known coastal region of Rías Baixas, home of the Albariño grape, the dramatic terraced landscapes of Ribeira Sacra along the Sil and Miño rivers, and Ribeiro, famous for its centuries-old winemaking traditions and wonderful native white grapes like Treixadura, Torrontés or Godello.
Massimo is made from Mencía and Sousón vines planted between 30 and 90 years ago in slate and granite soils on the steep, terraced slopes of the Ribeira Sacra Denominación de Origen in Galicia.
Mencía is perfectly suited to the slate soils which you can find in abundance in northwest Spain. It can give a range of different wine styles, but in general, people tend to describe Mencía wines as fresh and perfumed, quite ethereal in nature, with very appealing fruit that works well with very subtle oak or no oak at all. Some like to call it Spain’s Pinot Noir, while others compare it to the Cabernet Franc grown in the Loire.
Sousón is one of the most widely planted red grapes in Galicia, although it’s more common in Rías Baixas. Known for its excellent structure and intense colouring, Sousón produces wines with lots of dark fruit like blackberries and blackcurrants.
Where it's made
Ribeira Sacra is the only one of Galicia's five Denominaciones de Origen that specialises in red wines. The terrain is rugged, with vineyards that seem to hang from the vertiginous banks of the Sil and Miño rivers that dissect the region. With such steep vineyard plots that are difficult to access, it's no surprise that "heroic viticulture" is a phrase that often gets used when talking about Ribeira Sacra. It's also no surprise that wine production here is small-scale.
Despite its position in the northwest of Spain and proximity to the Atlantic, the climate of Ribeira Sacra can vary greatly from one area to the next, with some more continental aspects such as long, hot summers and relatively mild autumns. But rainfall, as in the rest of Galicia, is relatively high.
Mencía remains the most widely planted red variety, although many of the new wave Ribeira producers put the focus on less well-known, native varieties like Brancellao or Merenzao, different versions of Caíño, Sousón or Espadeiro. White wines tend to be made from better-known varieties familiar in other Galician DOs like Godello, Treixadura, Torrontés, Loureira or even Albariño.
How it's made
The grapes are selected and harvested by hand and undergo a temperature-controlled fermentation in stainless steel tanks.