Called the Picasso of the wine world, Raúl Pérez is a true all-rounder in the field. Pérez, who is almost 50 years old, has already made a hundred different wines, and the pace seems to be accelerating. Raúl's intuitive ability to bring out the full potential of every piece he works on has attracted widespread respect not only in Spain, but around the world. Many Spanish winegrowers and winemakers name Raúl as their role model and mentor.
Raúl was born in Bierzo to a wine family that runs Bodega Castro Ventosa. Raúl honed his winemaking skills in the family's teachings until 2004, after which the young visionary decided to establish his own farm near his home village of Valtuille de Abajo. The numerous wine plots, only 3-4 rows in size, located on the green hills of Valtuille and its surrounding areas, consist of different soils and vary in climatic conditions. The highest peaks in the area reach up to 650 meters and the ancient vines, up to 140 years old, are among the oldest in northwestern Spain.
Bursting with endless energy, Pérez produces subtle and sensuous wines from his patchwork-like vineyards, mainly from the Mencía grape. Small amounts of e.g. Alicante Bousche, Bastardo, Doña Blanca, Godello and Sousón, often mixed.
The La Vizcaina project, started in 2011, is definitely one of the best wine collections in the country. Raúl started the project together with his nephews. Nerea and Cesar used to work in the family business Castro Ventosa, but together with Raúl, they decided to pay attention to the nurseries located in the area of Valtui de Abajo village. The shelters were familiar to everyone from the past, but their exceptionality was also wanted to be brought out to the rest of the world. Over the years, Raúl managed to claim the shelter areas for himself, and now the shelters, with the exception of La Poulosa, belong entirely to him. A tragic accident during the harvest befell Nerea in 2014, and a year later Cesar decided to start making his own wines with Castro Ventosa. Today, the La Vizcaina project is therefore completely in Raúl's own hands and part of the rest of the wine selection of Bodegas y Viñedos Raúl Pérez.
The grapes used in La Vizcaina wines are obtained from different orchards around the heart of Bierzo, the village of Valtuille de Abajo. The soils and air directions of the orchards differ so much that Raúl does not want to mix grapes with each other, but vinifies each vineyard as its own wine. The reason for this is easy to understand when you get to taste the wine produced from each vineyard in the parallels. Minimal intervention, fermentation without added yeast or temperature control, the use of whole bunches and neutral oak barrels guarantee the expression of the individuality of the barns in the glass. Over the years, neighboring plots of the same age, with matching soils and the same characteristics have been added to the original plots, so that the production quantities have been increased to 5-7,000 bottles per wine.