Eixaders is the name of an abandoned village in the former barony of Vallbona, at the far western edge of the Corb River high basin, where the landscape transforms the plain into pleated ridges. The name also recalls the hoes we still use to work the fields today. It is a name that ties us to the land where this wine is made, and which speaks of an historically inhabited and cultivated space.
Eixaders is the L’Olivera chardonnay. Without abandoning our commitment to historical Mediterranean varieties, at L’Olivera we still grow this French variety on three plots at Vallbona, as a small tribute to the tradition handed down to us from Burgundy, the cradle of the Cistercian order. This monastic order is thought to have pioneered agronomy in Europe, given the huge contribution it made to the study and organisation of the land.
With Eixaders we have been exploring the grape’s potential in this rain-fed and fairly high area since the 1990s. We successfully developed grapes that ripen slowly and can be made into wine with a very appealing balance between alcohol content and acidity. Fermentation and ageing in the barrel, along with regular stirring (battonage), has produced a wine with an excellent capacity for ageing. Its freshness and aromatic intensity make Eixaders a good example of the way balanced Chardonnay varietals can be produced in a Mediterranean setting, with a good combination of freshness and alcohol content, maintaining a full-bodied, luscious palate.
ORIGIN: Vineyards around Vallbona de les Monges in the Corb River Valley subzone of the Costers del Segre DO. Plots characterised by the drystone walls that surround the vineyards, preserving the fertility of the soil and the efficiency of the water.
SOIL: Chalky clay soil with variable levels of stoniness and depth.
CLIMATE: The climate is continental Mediterranean, with cold dry winters and hot summers tempered by the soft evening breeze blowing in from the sea that cools the night, particularly during the ripening season. The scarce rainfall is concentrated in autumn and spring (350-450 mm yearly).
Organic farming. Manual harvest in crates of 10-12 kg.
Fermented at a controlled temperature in American and French oak barrels. Aged on the lees for 3-4 months and stirred (battonage) weekly.
2022 vintage: 3,371 bottles
Characteristics of the vintage
The 2022 vintage was very complicated at an agronomic level: spring frosts, very little rainfall (30% below the average of recent years), and several exceptional episodes of days with temperatures above 35ºC, with average temperatures above the norm. All these elements led to limited plant development and a considerable reduction in production (between 30 and 40% lower than average in our rainfed viticulture conditions). These extreme conditions of heat and drought forced us to advance the harvest a lot to maintain the balance of the grapes. We started it unusually early on August 16th and finished it on September 26th. The conditions of drought and low humidity allowed, at least, to obtain a grape in ideal sanitary conditions and without any fungal or disease damage.
Viticulture and wine processing
Certified organic dry land farming. We harvest the grapes manually and press them whole, including seeds and stems. The must is fermented at a controlled temperature of 15-17ºC in American (75%) and French (25%) oak barrels, with 25% new wood. The wine is aged on the lees and stirred (battonage) every week during the 3-4 month ageing period, creating a more full-bodied palate and subtly and elegantly incorporating the woody notes into the flavour of the wine.
Alcohol content: 14%
Total acidity: 2.93 g/l (sulphuric acid)
Volatile acidity: 0.50 g/l
Residual sugar: 0.8 g/l (glucose+fructose)
Total sulphur: 80 mg/l
Bright straw yellow color with golden hues. On the nose, citrus aromas and white fruit (pear, apple) with floral hints (white flowers), a touch of orange blossom and the presence of toasted wood. On the palate, fresh fruit and floral aromas returns, with a touch of overripe fruit and an intense but elegant toast. An ample, full-bodied wine with a marked acidity that gives it a fresh and persistent finish. Ideal for pairing with creamy cheeses and also with pasta au gratin with béchamel sauce. The perfect partner for samfaina (a catalan ratatouille) and white meat dishes such as fricandó (a typical catalan stew).
2021: 90 points (2018 vintage)
2013: 92 points (2009 vintage)
2012: 90 points (2008 vintage)
International Wine Awards 2019:
Gold medal (2018 vintage)
Great Gold medal (2018 vintage)
Golden Leaf Awards 2017:
Silver medal (2015 vintage)
Gold medal (2014 vintage)