Ribeiro is making a comeback, and Finca Viñoa is at the forefront of the movement.
The second oldest appellation in Spain, with wines being made there since at least 200 BC, had been silent for more than a century, after the oidium and phylloxera plagues that hit hard the economy of the region in the late 19th Century. The old indigenous varietals were almost forgotten, and the steep crus along the Miño, Avia and Arnoia rivers were left behind, engulfed by growing forests of pine and eucaliptus.
Finca Viñoa is an ambitious project started 20 years ago by José and Javier González. Their project aimed to restore the terroir and the grapes of the region, and to bring them back where they belonged. They talked to the elder local people in each village, visiting the estates that gave fame and fortune to the region. They started putting together parcels in 2001. Their flagship slope, Finca Viñoa, was terraced in spectacular socalcos while others, like Finca Sobreiriña, an old grand cru that should be capable of producing wines of subtle nuance, is still in the process of being cleared out of the trees and bushes that invaded it for decades. Aside from reclaiming the terroir, they are also bringing back the native varieties: Treixadura (Queen of all the local varieties), Godello, Albariño and Loureira for the whites; and Sousón, Caíño and Brancellao for the reds.