A Journey Through Wine
In Spain, the word "Nave" can refer to various things, such as a ship with no oars, a spaceship, or a section of a temple. It can also mean a warehouse, so when Javier Oliver started his own winemaking business he would tell people he was going to "La Nave", which led them to believe he was embarking on a voyage by ship. Thus, the name Bodega Nave Rover was born.
Javier is part of a renowned Mallorcan family that specializes in viniculture. His extended family own wineries throughout the island, such as Ribas in Consell and Oliver Moragues in Algaida, which is where he also grows his own grapes. In 2007, he decided to start his own venture, and by 2010, he produced his first wine – a sweet Moscatel aged in barrels. This was a bold choice and a suggestion that he didn’t intend to create ordinary wines.
Today, he tends to 7.5 hectares of vines, which are all grown organically. He cultivates local and international varieties, such as Mantonegro, Syrah, Moscatel, Viognier, and Chardonnay. The vines are located in front of the Nave, creating a stunning backdrop visible from the top terrace of the winery. One can also admire the majestic Tramuntana mountain range from this peaceful oasis, tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the main roads - a perfect retreat for city residents.
Javier produces one dry white, his signature sweet wine, and two reds. The reds are made up of a heavenly blend of Syrah and Mantonegro, a local variety that complements the spicy and deep-coloured Syrah very well. The two reds have different styles; the Tinto spends a year in oak barrels and is sold as a type of Crianza, while the Nº1 is a red that spends two years in French oak barrels and tends to be in the Reserva style, a rare and disappearing ageing period for a Mallorcan red.
Javier's dry Moscatel wine is unique, incorporating 10% Viognier, which brings more body to the mix and creates a fresh and fragrant white that's perfect for any occasion. His sweet wine is a treasure. It is only produced under precise conditions, and he only sells it when he believes it is perfect. Javier has a discerning palate so the grapes must reach the perfect balance of sweetness and acidity before he is prepared to leave them to overripe on the vines. Once some of the grapes have turned into raisins, the "late harvest" begins. The wine undergoes fermentation and other processes before being transferred to oak barrels for ageing until it reaches perfection. Only the best vintages make it to market, with the most recent releases being from 2017 and 2010, in that order. This is a testament to Javier's patience and commitment to selling only the finest sweet wine.
All of Javier's red wines have character and personality, offering consumers a chance to step away from trendy wines and enjoy the flavours that won't go out of fashion.
To reflect his adventurous spirit, Javier labels his wines with images of classic vehicles and travel items, such as a zeppelin, an old motorbike, a propeller plane, and even a luggage tag. His wines are an invitation to explore new flavours and sensations, and to embark on a journey through wine.
Written by Iván González Gaínza & Lara Corfield, Wine Industry Mallorca
Photography by Javier Oliver.
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