2022 Bodegas Viñátigo 'Listán Blanco de Canarias", Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain

The 2022 Listán Blanco de Canarias from Viñátigo is crafted from one hundred year-old, ungrafted vines and fermented and raised in stainless steel. The wine is a quite reductive when first opened up, but eventually blossoms nicely to delivers scents of fresh lime, stony volcanic minerality, dried flowers, fleur de sel, wild fennel and iodine. On the palate the wine is bright, fullish and nicely defined by its underlying minerality, with a good core, zesty acids, fine focus and grip and a long, complex and well-balanced finish. I really like the backend lift and grip this wine shows once it opens up! I assume the reductive aspects on the nose will dissipate with bottle age, but if one is inclined to drink the wine now, make sure to decant it for half an hour before serving, just to let it open up. It is quite tasty once it blossoms!



Listán Blanco de Canarias was first brought to the Canary Islands in the 18th century by Andalusian conquerors, where it now thrives in our volcanic soils. We grow it at higher altitudes to emphasise the natural freshness of the grape, and we still train the vines in the traditional ‘parrales’ method inherited from the Portuguese settlers in the 15thcentury. Our vines dot the slopes and ravines in the north of Tenerife, created by the last eruptions of the Teide volcano, where they´re cooled by the ocean breezes.


Juan Jesus is a proud native of Tenerife and the fourth generation of growers in the island. During the twenty-five years that he’s overseen Bodegas Viñátigo, he has considerably increased its holdings, planting varieties that he and his team recuperated. During these years he has also juggled the classes he teaches as a professor of viticulture and enology at the Ciclo Superior de Vitivinicultura. Juan Jesus and his wife Elena Batista – who has helped along the way, dealing in all aspects of production, from the vineyard to the cellar – have worked closely with Fernando Zamora from the famous Rovira I Virgili Universtiy in Tarragona, to study, catalog, preserve, and vinify imperiled indigenous grape varieties.

Varieties such as Baboso Negro and Vijariego Negro are known to us now by these names mainly because of the work of this duo who identified more than eighty different varieties in the Canary Islands. They recovered those varieties from the island of El Pinar and have since propagated them in Tenerife.

Now however, the new generation slowly started taking over, and his son Jorge Mendez, who studied viticulture in Madrid is in charge of the farming. While the work in the vineyard and winery has always been sustainable, now with Jorge all of Viñátigo’s holdings are farmed organically, and many are being treated biodynamically. Another addition to the team has been Juan Jesus’ daughter, Celia Mendez, who is in charge of marketing and other business aspects such as educational work and sales. The family works collaboratively, constantly exchanging ideas and viewpoints.

The grapes are hand-harvested and fermented using indigenous yeasts. Grapes go through two triages, first in the fields and then again in the winery. Minimal sulfur is used in the winery and no synthetic materials are used in the winemaking.


Grape(s) Listán Blanco
Farming Organic