Today we are going to talk about Negra San Francisco 2019 made by Viña Maturana. I had never heard of the grape San Francisco until I came across this bottle at Tandem Wine. After some looking around, I understood why.
San Francisco is a very old grape; its records go back to 1646 according to researcher Alvaro Trello. However, it was only in 2017 that José Igancio Maturana initiated the paperwork asking SAG to add San Francisco to the list of grape varieties than can be used in winemaking. Although it is an old grape, only now we are seing its firts wines. This means we have the unique opportunity to see how these wines will evolve.
¿How did José Ignacio Maturana “discover” the grape?
“Discover” is not the proper word. San Francisco caught the winemaker’s attention while he explored Loncomilla Valley, a subregion of Maule. He noticed it was hidden among other vines, mixed and mistaken for other varieties; and decided to vinify the grape. The result? We’ll see next.
It is a family winery founded in 2010 by the brothers José Ignacio and Sebastián Maturana. In 10 years they went from 3.000 to 40.000 bottles produced. Their wine portfolio, varieties and ethos reflect the values of a new generation, very different from the traditional names of the industry. Their philosophy drifts more towards the independent winemakers.
Their mission, according to the website, includes the rescue of lost grape varieties, fair trade, and empowering small producers. It all seems very consistent with their wine labels and with San Francisco “discovery” story.
Negra San Francisco 2019
Let’s uncork! A freshly squeezed strawberry juice. Don’t get me wrong. It is a good wine, made with a clear purpose of getting us into a pool party mood.
Light ruby red color, good aromatic intensity, lots of strawberry (as mentioned) cherry, raspberry, all very fresh. Light body, low tannins, high acidity and medium alcohol.
We have a lot of pool party wines: whites, sparklings, rosé, Pinot Noir, but this one came to compete for a spot. It is a new valid option for those who love summer reds, made to be enjoyed chilled – I’d say around 14°C-16°C. It does not ask for a food pairing, but if you insist, go with some grilled vegetables or dishes that have a more delicate flavor.
A wine “worth considering”. It is simple, yummy and light. And even though the price tag may make you think twice, it is your chance to try something new!