Before we begin, it is worth clarifying that we are addressing the tempranillo variety at all times. This is important to mention because depending on the type of variety and/or the region, the times, characteristics and other factors that are related to the grape may vary.
That said, the first thing we can highlight about the vine is its longevity. The vine can perfectly produce grapes even if it is more than 100 years old. It is obvious that, by its nature, a 100-year-old vine will not produce the same quantities of grapes as a 30-year-old vine, but it will offer us a denser fruit in must, more concentrated and interesting for some types of wines.
On the other hand, another important point to highlight is that a vine will not start to produce grapes until 3 or 5 years after it was planted, and that, in addition, until it reaches a minimum of 10 or 12 years of age, these grapes will not be of high quality, as a general rule. During the first 50 or even 60 years, the production of the vines is regulated at 6,500 kg of grapes per hectare of vineyard. After this age, the vineyard will be considered quite old and, although its production regulation will remain the same, its real production will gradually decrease until it reaches 3,000 or 3,500 kg.
As this happens, the quality of the grapes will also increase. This is because due to the number of clones (which we could consider them as different subvarieties within the same variety) we will find different types of Tempranillo, which will create a wine with different aromas and flavors when making wine. In addition, as the grapes are smaller and more concentrated, the must/skin ratio will be lower, so, as we know, the skin is what provides the aromas, colors and flavors to the wine, and the wine will have more contact with the skins during its elaboration, which will make the wine more interesting.
In general, these vines, which were planted by Eusebio Casado, Loli’s grandfather, who started the whole world of wine in our family, will be the ones we use to make our most special wines, such as Polus Tempranillo, Polus Reserva, Jaun de Alzate Reserva and Gran Reserva, mainly.
Here ends this explanatory article about what the age of the vine says about your grapes and wine, next week we will talk about the harvesting of olives. If you enjoyed this article, we invite you to stop by our YouTube channel, where every Saturday we upload a video dealing with the same topic as here in greater depth. The video related to this article will be released this Saturday.