About Veronica Ortega

Veronica Ortega was brought up in Cádiz with six elder brothers and a famous bullfighting father, but in the early 2000s she moved away to Priorat where she worked with Alvaro Palacios and Daphne Glorian (Clos Erasmus), then Burn Cottage in Central Otago NZ, Niepoort in the Douro, Comte Armand and then a season at DRC in Burgundy, followed finally by a spell with Domaine Combier in Crozes.

Upon her return to Spain she worked with Raul Perez in Bierzo from whose cellar she experimented before setting out definitively with her own project in 2012. She loves the region of Bierzo, for its history, the authenticity of its wines, its strong Atlantic influence, and a variety in mencía that is very sensitive to its soil types and altitude, from which you can produce many different styles with a lot of vintage variation too. It reminds her a lot of the syrah she worked with in the northern Rhône for its wild nature and savoury character, and comments that in blind tastings the two grapes can be confused.

She has gradually pieced together her holdings of five hectares of old vines, though she has struggled to buy tiny plots, noting that locals are very tied to their land and prefer to own it and do nothing with it rather than selling! She follows organic practices and is in the process of converting to bio-dynamics. Three of the four wines we buy from her are partly aged in amphora, because she likes the purity and the texture of the fruit that amphora help to convey, and she prefers to work with whole bunches for her best reds.