Paco & Lola: Intelligent Design
Modernity, originality, dynamism and intelligence are the keys to success which definite a business venture created in 2005 with very clear ideas. The ideas in question being to demystify wine, to strip it of its elitist and only for those-in-the-know character, and to reach a younger generation – or a ‘less-aware’ public – via pure enjoyment and pleasure for its own sake. Nothing at Paco & Lola is unintentional: its unusual, ground-breaking image; its sales and marketing strategies, and even the character of its wines are perfectly calculated and designed to offer the public a hedonist, innovative experience with lots of class
Equally impressive is the fact that the venture in question is a joint effort: a group of viticulturists and winemakers from DO Rías Baixas, from the sub-region of O Salnés, to be more precise, launched an initiative to create their very own co-operative — the ‘Sociedad Cooperativa Vitivinícola Arousana’ — in order to capitalise on their vineyards and give a more professional character to their wine production. Currently, the association boasts more than 400 members and is one of the appellation’s most important co-operatives whose products are available in more than 40 countries.
The Salnés Valley, in the province of Pontevedra, is a privileged natural environment for vine cultivation. The optimal balance between rainfall, the fluctuation between day and night temperature in the ripening season, and the slightly acidic sandy-loam granite soils, have turned this region into the perfect place for the production of top-of-the-range wines. The slopes which run down to the sea are particularly suited to the ideal evolution of the emblematic Albariño grape variety, which on its home-ground expresses the full potential of its aromas and flavours.
Paco & Lola Vineyard
Paco & Lola boasts 200 hectares of its own vineyards divided in around 2,000 small plots, a traditional practice in the smallholding-world of Galicia. The division by size, type of soil and orientation of each individual vineyard is a valuable asset when it comes to making the exquisite coupages released on the market every year.
The average age of the vineyards is around 20 years old and the vines are trained using the traditional trellises system. In accord with modernity and the thirst for originality which impregnates everything the bodega does, the cutting-edge techniques used in viticulture and the state-of-the-art technology used in winemaking are all aimed at enhancing the expression of the unique terroir. The most recent oenological inroads have formed an alliance with the tried and tested experience of the region’s viticulturists in order to explore the virtues of the raw material to the full. The whole process is based on the idea of maximum respect for the quality of the product, and on tending the land and environment using only environmentally friendly cultivation methods, while at the same time guaranteeing food safety and cost-effectiveness. Fertilisers, phytosanitary products and fossil fuels are only used when it is strictly necessary and when the appropriate technical justifications have been presented. That’s why they are certified by the BRC (British Retail Consortium) and the IFS (International Food Standard). Both certifications are recognized and trusted worldwide, and carrying their seals of guarantee is additional proof that their products measure up to the highest industry and consumer standards.
The rigorous quality controls employed by the bodega cover the whole process from the vineyard to bottling and storage. Harvesting is carried out by hand, in industry approved crates, once the continuous ripening controls have indicated that the grapes have reached their optimum maturity. The selection of grape clusters, which happens at the entrance to the bodega, is carried out with painstaking care in order to guarantee that the grapes reach the destemming and crushing processes in the best possible conditions, before starting the fermentation process in temperature controlled stainless-steel vats.
This is how ‘Paco & Lola’ was conceived, a young wine for young people, full of modernity yet with a touch of sophistication; a smooth Albariño with just a dash of acidity, which conquers everyone’s palate. ‘Paco & Lola’ was designed with a global and cosmopolitan market in mind, yet without losing sight of the lifestyles chosen by new consumers; open-minded individuals who crave new experiences. Its creators definite it as: “the most stylish, enjoyable white wine in Spain”.
Paco & Lola Bottle
Made from 100 per cent Albariño grapes, ‘Paco & Lola’ is bright straw-yellow in colour, elegant and fruity on the nose (grapefruit and green apples), with hints of aromatic herbs. Medium-bodied in the mouth, this wine is balanced with vivacious acidity and boasts fruity flavours as well as a long finish. And, just like any Albariño worth its weight, it is the perfect match for fish, rice, white meats and seafood.
Despite its relative youth, ‘Paco & Lola’ boasts an impressive list of international awards. The 2014 vintage, winery’s flagship, picked up four gold medals in the best challenges of the world: Concours Mondial de Bruselles, Mundus Vini Spring Tasting, International Wine Challenge y Challenge International du Vin. The bodega’s list of achievements, undoubtedly the result of its immaculate marketing campaign, also includes a Silver Medal won for its Packaging Design at the International Wine & Spirits Competition (in the ‘Contemporary Design’ category); it was the wine chosen for the Barcelona Fashion Week closing ceremony in 2008; the wine chosen for the Los Angeles premiere of the Woody Allen film, ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona’, and the wine which was present at the Wimbledon 2012 opening ceremony.
This ‘intelligent design’, the upshot of combining quality, modernity and originality, is beginning to generate results. The bodega exports more than 40 per cent of its production, mainly to the US, but also to the UK, Poland, Canada, Brazil, Norway, China, Mexico, Holland, Australia and Switzerland. And, to a large extent, an active and conscientious use of social networks (Twitter and Facebook) is also helping this wine to get closer to its potential consumers and dealers.
Paco & Lola also makes ‘Lolo’, an excellent value for money secondary export brand targeted, above all, at a younger public. ‘Ophalum’, from their youngest vineyards. ‘iWine’, with its extraordinary silver-coloured bottle, is made from the grapes grown on the oldest vines, and is the bodega’s most sophisticated top-of-the-range product. ‘Follas Novas’, a classic Albariño produced in the most traditional way. And ‘Paco & Lola – Licor de Frambuesa’, which is an eau-de-vie made from Albariño-based ‘orujo’ and natural raspberries which have been macerated for three months.
A more classic presentation of ‘Lolo’, designed for some international markets, has been recently launched. And also 'Paco', a wine under DO Navarra, half Tempranillo and half Garnacha, as the red 'brother' of 'Paco & Lola'.
Equally impressive is the fact that the venture in question is a joint effort: a group of viticulturists and winemakers from DO Rías Baixas, from the sub-region of O Salnés, to be more precise, launched an initiative to create their very own co-operative — the ‘Sociedad Cooperativa Vitivinícola Arousana’ — in order to capitalise on their vineyards and give a more professional character to their wine production. Currently, the association boasts more than 400 members and is one of the appellation’s most important co-operatives whose products are available in more than 40 countries