Sang de Corb
Celler Frisach is in Corbera d’Ebra, a small town in the region of Terra Alta about two hours southwest of Barcelona. Corbera is your typical 1,000 person community. Everyone knows each other, everyone says hi to one another and at some point throughout the day everyone occupies a seat at one of the two cafes on the town’s main drag. Directly above the main drag of Corbera, above the small groups of abuelos who sit outside for hours on summer evenings, above the tight-knit community and the Montana-like dive bars lies the Poble Vell, or, the Old Town. The Old Town, an official historical site, is a chunk of history that represents the 1938 Battle of Ebro- probably the deadliest battle of the Spanish Civil war. Almost everything in the Old Town was destroyed in the 115-day battle, save the old church that been restored as a rotating art gallery and the ruins of old stone houses and cellars. There’s an unequivocal weight of sadness in the Old Town. You feel the sensation of terror in the dry wind that blows through the pine trees, you almost experience the grief in the silence that sits at the top of the hill. But walk down the road a bit to the “new town” and you find business as usual. You find both young and old generations occupying life, you find bars and restaurants filled with the local community and you find Celler Frisach- a tiny Bodega making some of the best wines coming out of Spain.
Francesc Ferre’s family has been farming grapes organically in Corbera d’Ebre for over 200 years, but only just began making wine in 2009 with then 21-year-old Francesc at the helm, fresh out of school. It looks as if a giant pulled a ripcord from the earth to create the mountains on either side of their Mediterranean valley, flanked by a forest to the east and a modern phalanx of windmills on its blustery western ridge. Corbera’s combination of hot, dry days in the Mediterranean sun, evening marinada onshore wind, and cool nights at Corbera’s high elevation allow grapes to maintain their acidity in otherwise arid conditions and makes it an ideal place to grow fresh, vivacious Garnatxa.
Sang de Corb is the serious, yet restrained red blend with elegance, muscle, a moniker, and a label that depicts the bloodiest battle in the Spanish Civil war. Certified Organic. 66 year-old Garnatxa (40%), Garnatxa Peluda (20%), Cariñena (40%). Iron-rich calcareous clay, alluvial soils @ 300m above sea level. Vines co-planted amongst almond, olive, and apple trees. Co-fermented in stainless steel and aged on the fine lees for 3.5 months then transferred to mostly neutral 300 L French oak barrels for 12 months. Absolute minimal filtration, minimal SO2.