El Escocés Volante (The Flying Scotsman), Norrel Robertson MW, touched down with his family in Spain in 2003 and released his first wine in 2004 (Manga del Brujo)
Norrel has been making wine in Spain for over 15 years and is currently one of three Master of Wines living in Spain. He was born and raised in Scotland and, after graduating from Aberdeen University with a MA Honours degree in Politics and International Relations, has worked in the wine industry for over 25 years, starting in sales in the UK before moving on to buying and product development.
In the late 1990’s Norrel decided to pursue a career in winemaking and decided the best way was to learn from the cellar up. Norrel went on to work vintages in Chianti in Italy (Tenuta Di Arceno), Portugal (Esporao & Quinta de la Rosa), Australia (Nepenthe), France (Roussely, Touraine) and Chile (Laroche, Casablanca Valley). In 1998, Norrel embarked on the Master of Wine Course and became a Master of Wine in November 2000, winning the Robert Mondavi Award for the best overall theory performance in the exam.
In 2003, he moved to Spain to as Winemaker for International Wine Services and quickly fell in love with the old Garnacha vineyards in the area of Calatayud, Aragón and decided to start making his own wines. His company – EL ESCOCÉS VOLANTE SL – took off and Norrel now produces many award winning wines made from very specially selected vineyards at high altitude in Aragón, Spain. He also has winemaking projects in Murcia, Valencia and Galicia. His own wines are sold in over 20 markets. He consults for many high profile wineries in Spain and also to winery clients in Chile and South Africa.
EL ESCOCÉS VOLANTE currently owns 21 hectares of Old Vine Garnacha around the villages of Villarroya de la Sierra and Cervera de la Cañada, a collection of vineyards ranging from 45 to 110 years old) and some new plantings. Viticulture is sustainable and organic with certification begin carried out in the up and coming years.
'This is medium ruby red with a bright, almost magenta rim and oily tears; pure red and black plum, black cherry, with fragrant violets, fine herbs on the nose. Dry, medium plus body, medium plus acidity, medium, fine tannis, sour cherry, red plums, structured but equally juicy. Delicious!' Anja Breit, Philglas & Swiggot