La Rioja Alta – Lagar de Fornelos Tasting

We bring you a new tasting that we carried out last May, with La Rioja Alta – Lagar de Fornelos.

This was a study of isolation, identification, selection and characterisation of the winery’s own yeasts. The micro vinifications of this study were tried at the tasting.

For this tasting, Alejo Fernandez (Lagar de Fornelos Winemaker), Ángel Suarez (Technical Director of Lagar de Fornelos), Julio Sáenz (Technical Director of the Rioja Alta Group) and Alejandro López (Deputy Technical Director of the Rioja Alta Group), travelled to the LEV2050 facilities in Pamplona. Here the tasting took place together with David García Yoldi (CEO of LEV2050) and Ernesto Pérez (Head of Oenology at LEV2050).

Before starting the tasting, we took a small tour of our facilities. We started at the microbiology laboratories, where we make the isolations, identification and selection of the most different yeasts. Then, we visited the oenology rooms, where we carry out the characterisation of the yeasts by means of micro-vinifications. We finished in the customised biomass production room, where we produce the industrial multiplications of the yeasts or other microorganisms.

What did the tasting consist of?

We tasted twenty micro-vinifications, all with the same wine base, that is, they come from same grapes. However, each micro-vinification was has a different yeast as fermentation starter. These can be of the genus Saccharomyces, as well as different species of the genus Non-Saccharomyces. All these strains belong to the winery La Rioja Alta – Lagar de Fornelos. LEV2050 has isolated, identified and characterised them in micro-fermentations.

The tasting showed that each of the 20 resulting micro-vinifications presented totally different organoleptic profiles. After the tasting, the winery chose the yeasts that revealed the best profiles in the wine, taking into account the analytical data resulting from each fermentation. We saw some really interesting things.

Subsequently, in June, different mixed micro-vinifications were carried out with these selected yeasts, using blends of the same yeasts as fermentation starters, seeking synergies between them. After this second tasting, the La Rioja Alta – Lagar de Fornelos winery will be able to use the combinations of its own yeasts that it liked best as fermentation starters in the next harvest, in order to obtain its own unique profiles.

Here are some photos of the tasting:


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