Igneus’ cellar was completed just in time to vinify the 2004 vintage. It is specifically designed to be able to vinify each small parcel separately, allowing us to wait until the moment of peak ripeness for each grape variety and plot. This is especially important as we have estates in three different villages within the D.O. and the ideal ripening points of each parcel of the same variety rarely coincide:
Wherever possible, wine is moved by gravity rather than pumps. Even during macerations when the wine is regularly pumped over the skins, this is achieved by drawing wine off into a stainless steel basin, and with the help of a forklift truck, poured back over the skins. Moreover, the macerations are done using a technique known as “submerged skins” whereby the grape skins or châpeau, which usually float to the top of a fermenting vat, are artificially kept below the surface of the wine to favour extraction and keep volatile elements to a minimum.
After fermentation, the wine is ready to be transferred to the French oak barrels that give the different Igneus wines their names: the red FA206, and the white FA104. FA refers to Fusta Allier, Catalan for “Allier Wood” whilst the numbers refer to the age of the barrel, and the months spent in it. Hence 104 are 1st year barrels, with the wine 04 months in oak. The FA206 spends 06 months in 2nd year barrels.
In the case of the top of the range Costers de l’Ermita and the FA112, malolactic fermentation is done in the new oak barrels in which the wine ages. At the end of the ageing process, the wines are bottled unfined, and with only a very light filtering.