The Vinos Plata Estate:
- Erick Plata of Vinos Plata is the kind of discovery you make on your 20th trip to Valle de Guadalupe that makes you realize just how little you know about it. How could someone so well-connected and making such incredible wines manage to fly under your radar? Anyway, we found him and now we are with him for good. His wines are an epiphany that you have to try to believe. 2020 marks the first time Plata's wines have left Mexico, and once the word spreads about what's in these bottles, they are going to be as hard to locate as if they had never arrived. Legend in the making.
Erick gets his grapes from several different vineyard sites:
- Valle de Guadalupe - Sandy soil at an elevation of 900 ft - average vine age 15 years - (Syrah, Sauvignon Blanc, and Merlot) - 5 hectares.
-Ojos Negros - Clay soil at an elevation of 1,400 ft - average vine age 15 years - (Tempranillo, Merlot, and Syrah) - 1 hectare
- Valle de San Vicente - 3 vineyard sites:
- Chardonnay and Grenache - Sandy soil at an elevation of 1,200 ft - average vine age 35 years - dry farmed- 5 hectares.
- Tempranillo and Syrah - Clay soil at an elevation of 800 ft - average vine age 30 years - 10 hectares.
- Grenache - Clay soils at an elevation of 800 ft - average vine age 5 years - 2 hectares.
- Erick learned how to make wine in apprenticeship to a couple of the legends and pioneers of the winemaking industry in Mexico - Hugo D'Acosta and Cruz Macias. At 10 years of training and running, Erick is one of the most sensitive and inquisitive winemakers to be found in the region. An encyclopedia of knowledge already, he's the kind of personality whose mind is constantly oriented towards what he has yet to learn; a category Erick himself would tell you expands the closer you get to it.
- If there is a wine that fits the "garagiste" definition in the Valle, it's Vinos Plata. His operation carries with it all of the connotations of finding an absolute diamond in the rough. Despite the size and complete lack of pretense of his operation, Erick is making wines in Mexico that are some of the most deserving of world-wide recognition of any to be found.
Total production: 3 wines, 1,200 cases
2017 Plata Pura - Vinos Plata
Tasting Notes and Drinking Window:
If there is a better Merlot that comes from this region, we haven't found it. The 2017 Plata Pura represents the fine work of a talented vigneron who happens to have access to some of the best grapes in the region. The wine puts on full display the heights that can be reached when good fruit is placed in able hands. Interestingly, Erick Plata crafts this wine from grapes harvested from 4 vineyard sites in 4 different valleys, having found that each brought a different element of complexity and expression to the wine. Full-bodied and accessible now though capable of aging well for a decade or more, act fast to get your hands on this one.
Only 300 cases were made and 12 were allocated to the US market.
Drinking window: Now - 10-15 years
Erick Plata - Mexican
This wine is unique in that Erick wanted to ue Merlot from 4 sites in each of the principle valleys to make the wine.
- San Vicente 1 - young vines (5 years) 700 ft elevation clay soil
- Ojos Negros - young vines (5 years) 1,800 ft elevation clay mixed with quartz
- Guadalupe - 15 year old vines, 900 ft elevation in sandy soil
- San Vicente 2 - 35 year old vines 700 ft elevation clay soil
Pressed juice was fermented in felxitanks for a period of 8 days and then racked into various types of barrels ranging from 1st use through netural, 50% American and 50% French oak. The wine aged here for 12 months.