A talk with Honorio Noya, our contact at Veiga Serantes, an excellent winery from Galicia’s Rías Baixas appellation and located in the Salnés Valley town of Barrantes. Tell me about Veiga Serantes and your role in its wine.
Veiga Serantes is a small family winery, housed in a lovely, modern building that blends in perfectly with its surroundings, set in the very heart of the Salnés Valley (Rías Baixas), near the village of Barrantes. The Serantes family have been growing grapes and making wines for many generations, and it is this tradition and knowhow that the winery strives to reflect in its winemaking today.
By paying special attention to our viticulture, it is our belief that in order to make a good, natural wine one needs the best possible grapes. The whole process, from the vineyard to market place is carried out by three people; Luis and Rafael Serantes and me. I am involved in the whole process, from helping out during pruning, canopy management and grape harvesting, through to winemaking, bottling, packaging and sales and marketing. In doing this, I can keep an eye on every stage of the process, thus acquiring a sound knowledge of the wines we make.
What are the main characteristics of your wine?
Our wines, Veiga Serantes and Veiga Serantes Selection, are wines that reflect the native grape variety Albariño, highly aromatic with citrus and stone fruit at the very front, and white flowers such as orange blossom on the second level, with clear mineral notes from the granite based soils of our vineyards. In the mouth it reveals a touch of lively acidity from the microclimate of the Rías Baixas region. Our wines are well assembled, round and balanced due to the fact that we take the time for them to become well integrated, this also makes them longer lasting, so they can be enjoyed even 7 to 10 years later.
What kind of consumers are you aiming your product at?
Our wines are mainly aimed at ‘mature’ wine drinkers, by this I mean people that drink wine regularly, people who know their stuff and are looking for wines with a typicité that truly reflects the special characteristics of the region they come from.
What about exports?
At this very moment we are exporting 30% of our wines, with the main markets being USA and Puerto Rico, among others like UK, China and Switzerland.
What about product innovation at Veiga Serantes?
Regarding winemaking we prefer to stick to the traditional old style methods, happy with the wine we have been making for many years now. So innovation at Veiga Serantes is more on the packaging and labeling side, always striving to communicate the philosophy of the winery in this particular area.
What is your opinion of so-called vanguard wine making?
It’s a big world out there with lots of countries and every country with its own different market segments, with plenty of wine expectations, which means there’s room for lots of different styles of wines. Personally speaking, I much prefer wines that reflect the true character of a region, wine with a clear identity. However, as a wine lover I also like to try something different, something that might surprise me and even please me, from time to time. So in short, I’m very glad that there are winemakers out there making wines in this challenging, innovative way. There are different occasions to enjoy different styles of wine.