Luis A. Rodriguez Vazquez - A Torna Dos Pasás 'Escolma' Tinto 2018


Luis Rodriguez has been quietly crafting remarkable Ribeiro wines since 1988.  From the beginning, Luis’s aim has been to showcase the enormous potential for the once nearly extinct native grapes to produce distinctive and age-worthy wines.   

The Ribeiro wine region was once world-renowned.  During the 16th and 17th centuries the wines were heavily traded on the Atlantic, most notably England was a big customer.  The traditional wine of the area was calledVino Tostado, made from grapes hung to dry in the sun, not so dissimilar to Italy’s Amarone.  Successive disasters profoundly affected the region’s wines, including war with England, oidium, mildew, phyloxera, and then civil war.  Ribeiro descended into an area responsible for primarily bulk wine production.  As of late, with the help ofcolleteiroslike Luis, there has been a movement towards producing wines that are more reflective of the unique Ribeiro terruño.

As a passionate son of Ribeiro, Luis Rodriguez is one of the most knowledgeable winegrowers that we have come in touch with in Galicia.  He studied enology and philosophy in Madrid, took the time to visit many of Europe’s great wine regions, and even served as the president of the Ribeiro D.O. for many years.  Over time, Luis has accumulated just under 6 hectares scattered over nearly 200 micro-plots primarily located in the town of Arnoia, a village with some of the steepest south-facing vineyards in Ribeiro. Here the soils are decomposed granite with sandy topsoil.  Luis’s vines range from 10 to 50 years old, with many of them being planted by Luis himself.  Having grown up in the village of Arnoia and by focusing his work there, Luis knows where the good vineyards are located. He has been steadily converting these plots from the bulk wine grapes Palomino and Garnacha Tintorera (Alicante Bouchet) to the native Treixadura, Lado, and Ferrol, to just name a few.  His philosophy in the vineyard is to maintain balance.  His approach to farming can be described aslutte raisonée, with no herbicides used ever, and treatments applied only if absolutely necessary, and never for a month before the harvest to help preserve the native yeasts existent on the grapes that help start fermentation.

A Torna Dos Pasás Escolma comes from a field blend of the lowest yielding old vines planted on steep south-facing granite hillsides in Arnoia. Escolma means “selection” in Gallego.  This top cuvée is only produced in excellent vintages. It was wild yeast fermented in barrel with some whole clusters, raised in a mix of new and old 300 liter French oak barrels for a minimum of 12 months, and further aged in the bottle for 36 months.


Producer: Luis A. Rodriguez Vazquez

Country: Spain

Region: Galicia

Varietal: Ferrol, Brancellao, Caíño Tinto

Appellation: Ribeiro

Vintage: 2018

Size: 750ml