Just over ten years after its creation, Viñas del Vero was already the first winery in the Denomination of Origin of Somontano and was ready to launch one of its most cherished projects: the creation of a winery that would not only produce premium wines. Blecua is a charming and delicious winery that opened its doors in July 2000. It is very close to Viñas del Vero, along the Vero river that connects Barbastro to Alquézar.
Blecua, better known locally as "torre Blecua" ("Blecua tower"), dates back to the 11th century, when it served as a retreat for the French Benedictine monks of Santa Fe de Conques. It extends over fourteen hectares in the very center of Somontano and includes a beautiful Italian villa which was built towards the end of the 19th century and which Viñas del Vero restored in order to build the winery where they make their most popular wine. emblematic: Blecua.
Blecua is the result of a triple selection: vines, grapes, and barrels.
Viñas del Vero has selected its best vineyards as places to grow the grapes that will produce Blecua every year. These are seven or eight low-yielding vineyards, located in areas with different microclimates of Somontano, on hillsides very exposed to the sun, which allows them to pick the different varieties that make up the blend at their point of maturity. optimum.
The grapes are harvested by hand and placed in small 10 kg crates. Upon arrival at the winery, the bunches are transferred to a sorting table to be selected, so that only the best quality grapes make it to the fermentation tanks. The grapes from the different vineyards are fermented separately in 18,000 liter French Allier oak vats. Fermentation and subsequent maceration continue for four weeks depending on the grape variety. The malolactic fermentation begins in the fermentation tanks and then, once it has started, the wines are transferred to barrels.
The wines are each placed in new French Allier oak barrels from four different cooperages. After twelve months in barrels, the best of each of the wines is selected, after which the final blend is made and put back in barrels for an additional eight months of ageing. Blecua therefore spends a total of 20 months in barrel before being bottled directly from the barrels without undergoing any stabilization or filtering process.
One of the characteristics of Blecua is that it is different every year, because only the best casks of each variety are retained through each of the selection processes.
Somontano is a region of Upper Aragon that is exceptional on two fronts: the richness of its natural environment and the beauty of its historical heritage: Alquézar, Torreciudad and the cave paintings of the Sierra de Guara are good examples.
Located near the Pyrenees and crossed by the Vero river, the Somontano offers exceptional conditions for growing vines. Rolling hills, dun-colored limestone, highly permeable soils, extreme winters and short summers create unprecedented agroclimatic conditions for the production of excellent wines. The Romans discovered it nearly twenty centuries ago and wine lovers still enjoy the results today.
Several influences come into play in the landscape of Somontano: the foothills of the Pyrenees, where the Sierra y Cañones de Guara nature reserve is located, the Sierra de Salinas, the Vero and Cinca rivers, which meander through the region and a horizon of vineyards , olive groves, holm oaks and almond trees.
In 1985, Viñas del Vero and several other local wineries instituted the Denomination of Origin Somontano which, in addition to being a benchmark of quality, is synonymous with respect for tradition and geographical origin, given that all grapes used to make DO Somontano wines come from vineyards in the area. Somontano is an innovative and dynamic Denomination of Origin which, in just a few years, has acquired an excellent reputation in the world of wine, both in Spain and internationally.
The first commercialized Blecua wine was made from the 1997 harvest, which was released in September 2000. They only bottled 15 barrels from the 1997 harvest and the wine was made from equal amounts of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Garnacha and Tempranillo.
Blecua 1998 was exceptional because it was a historic year for Somontano, considered by all to be the best year since the creation of the designation of origin: 68 barrels of Blecua were made, from two main varieties, Cabernet Sauvignon and Garnacha.
The 1999 Blecua was not released for sale, however. The wine did not meet the quality parameters they considered necessary for a wine of this level and with these characteristics, so the 1999 vintage was skipped.
Since the creation, only the 1997, 1998, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007, 2008, 2010, 2011 and 2013 vintages have been marketed and the most exceptional remain the 1998 and 2011 vintages.