Region: Itata Valley, Chile
Grape Varieties: Pais, Aramon, Cinsaut
Beto Fernández founded Leoncio in January, 2021. Beto was a sommelier for 15 years before coming to Itata to work with Roberto Henriquez. After a year, he struck out on his own, working with local farmers to preserve the ancient viticultural heritage of the area. His goal is to highlight, honor and protect these ancient vines, while simultaneously helping them to find an audience more globally. To that end, Beto does not buy vineyards, but instead works collaboratively with local farmers and their families to convert their vines to organic, regenerative, and biodynamic farming. Working this way helps improve the lives of the area’s farmers, who have historically struggled to find recognition and a market for their wines. In the Leoncio cellar, Beto works with very limited intervention, avoiding additives and employing only native yeasts. In the long term, he hopes to work without any sulfur additions.
The grapes were destemmed and macerated on the skins for 8 days before pressing with a small, manually operated vertical press into old Raulí foudres. Bottled without fining, filtering and with only a small sulfur addition.