6 bottle case
The red Txakoli (pronounced chak-oh-lee) of Itsasmendi is made from a blend of Pinot Noir (42%), an indigenous Basque grape called Hondarribi Beltza - 48% - (pronounced on-dar-ee-bee belt-za), and a small amount of Cabernet Franc, from vines over 20 year old in two small plots. Eklipse is part of an R&D project in collaboration with the Regional Government of Biscay and the Bizkaiko DO studying the agricultural and oneological behaviour of Pinot Noir and Hondarribi Beltza.
Eklipse has a unique varietal personality; much of which comes from the influences of the Cantabrian Sea which is only a few kilometers away, the age of the vines, plus the predominantly limestone and clay-loam soils. Average annual rainfall in the area is around 931mm.
The plots - 1 Ha (in Gorliz) on the coast of Bicay and .75 Ha in Muskiz - are also surrounded by an ancient Cantabrian Holm oak grove. The Cabernet Franc comes the Basarte de Bakio area.
Fermentation took place in temperature-controlled stainless steel conical tanks to retain the fresh aromatics of the grape, and then the wine is aged for ~10 months in a 2,000 litre French oak vat, to add structure and complexity. Malolactic fermentation took place in the wooden vat. 13.5% alc./vol.
Tasting Note: Ruby red colour. Deep blueberry, raspberry, and strawberry aromas and flavours, with slight floral (violets), underbrush, and mineral notes. Balanced acidity, medium body and tannins, and a clean elegant finish.
Pairing suggestions: Stews, fish (salmon and tuna), game, and earthy vegetarians dishes. Will handle spicier style dishes.