Dominio del Urogallo
Fran’s story is about his love for wine. After working for a few years in the field of renewable energies, Fran decided in 2011 to abandon everything and dedicate himself to viticulture. Today, Fran crafts wines on opposite ends of the Spanish peninsula: Dominio del Urogallo in Cangas de Narcea, Asturias, and Bodegas Alonso in Sanlúcar de Barrameda, where he bought and renamed the historic Pedro Romero winery containing some of the Sherry’s oldest soleras.
Asturias is a region famous for its ciders, and relatively unknown for its wine. However, the winemaking history goes back well over 1,000 years. Asturias is on the northern Atlantic coast of Spain. This is a continental climate with Atlantic influences. The subregion Cangas del Narcea is a lush and hilly area (300-700 meters) with steep slopes. The climate is on the cooler side with only about 1-2 months of summer heat. It is reminiscent to the Mosel and Ribeira Sacra. The soils are similar as well: slate, quartzite and anthracite.
Ascencio farms organically with biodynamic treatments and focuses on the local grape varieties of the region. He and his team farm about 13 hectares of vines of which they own three. The vines are some of the oldest in Asturias. Fran believes the wine is made in the vineyard, so most of the work during the year is done manually on the steep vineyard slopes. There is very minimal intervention in the cellar. After the grapes are manually harvested, they are fermented with indigenous yeast and bacteria. All wines go through malolactic fermentation and age for at least two winters. No sulfites are added.