Monica, who goes by the nickname Zas, speaks neither Valencian nor French, so we communicate through mutual goodwill, motivated by a desire to find out a little more about each other. To put our meeting in context, Monica works with Mariano Tabernes, a famous winemaker based in La Portera (Requena, Valencia), knowed for his natural wines.
In 2022, Monica and her daughter Estrella decided to create their own brand, Vinos Libres por Mujeres (free wines for women) and to make their first wine, Wild Fermentation, an ancestral (pet nat') Bobal, a red grape variety typical of the Utiel-Requena and the Mancha regions.
Carbonic maceration, also known as intracellular maceration, is a winemaking method devised in 1935 by French oenologist Michel Flanzy to produce light, fruity and aromatic red wines. This unique fermentation technique, known as anaerobic metabolism, encourages fermentation within the grape berries themselves, before traditional pressing takes place. The process involves placing whole bunches of grapes, with their skins intact, in a hermetically sealed vat, usually made of stainless steel or concrete. In the absence of oxygen, the grapes at the bottom of the vat begin to naturally release carbon dioxide. The berries at the top of the vat exert pressure on those below, causing some berries to burst and triggering fermentation within the whole berry.