(2022) Three months in French and American oak barrels for this Roble young wine. Deep, intense and plummy fruit, a twist of liquorice and some meatiness here, a darker-hued interpretation of Tempranillo. There's a dark, vinous quality to this, plummy, dark and firm fruit and tannins. There is good juiciness though, and spices, with a more extracted feel and firmer tannins than the Glorioiso Rioja for example.
(2022) Selected, hand-harvested Tempranillo is aged mainly in 300-litre French oak, with a small percentage of high quality American oak, medium toast. It spends at least 12 months in barrel. Plenty of vanilla and red fruit on the nose, strawbery-soft with some juicy bramble character too. In the mouth medium bodied, some clove-like, spicy oak adds seasoning to the red fruit. Smooth and well balanced, and drinks well.
(2022) From vines with more than 60 years of age, planted at more than 900 metres altitude. It was aged in French (70%) and American oak of various barrel sizes for 15 months, around 50% new oak. That was followed by more than 20 months ageing in bottle. Lots of spice and a plum and cherry compote nose, a hint of leather or game. The palate has more concentration and flesh than the Crianza perhaps, the spiciness and tobacco of the oak balanced by fresh fruit, tannins very silky and a balanced finish.
(2021) From their Pago del Cielo vineyard at 895 metres altitude in Ribera del Duero, this Tempranillo spent 12 months in a mix of French and American oak. There's a lovely lift of kirsch and violet at first, chocolaty and vanilla oak notes too, and deep black fruits. The palate offers more of the same, that is a depth of creamy and smooth black fruit and chocolate, but a little elegance too, a raspberry and cherry skin brightness with dry, sandy tannins and good balancing acidity. Flavoursome and good value. The 2018 vintage is in Waitrose at £12.99.
(2021) Chosen as wine of the week because it is a very good wine, but also because the death of winemaker and founder of Pesquera, Alejandro Fernandez, was announced just a few weeks ago. Fernandez was one of the most famous winemakers of Europe, and one of the first to put the Spanish region of Ribera del Duero on the map in the 1970s. The colour here is a such a vivid crimson, the nose a blend of smokiness, dark cherry compote and fragrant raspberry. American oak adds a vanilin smoothness to nose and palate, where the juiciness of the tempranillo is set against a bittersweet liquorice twist. The acid and silky tannins combine to give good structure, but the sweet fruit is fat and ripe on the mid-palate. Watch the video for food matching suggestions and more information. A fitting curtain call for Señor Fernandez.
(2021) From the Pagos Del Rey winery which I visited many, many years ago, this is a Reserva meaning it spent at least 12 months in barrel. It has a very deep, almost crimson-black colour for a five-year-old wine, and immediate aromas of cherry, blueberry, liquorice and briar. There's an obvious slick of vanilla adding to quite a plush opening salvo. In the mouth there is good intensity to the fruit, a fairly charry quality to the oak, but that bittersweetness of liquorice and endive sits nicely against the juicy, fleshy fruit. Tannins are soft and background, this finishes on sweet fruit, acidity and that charry and spicy oak.
(2018) From Roda's estate on the northern bank of the Duero, this is Corimbo 1, where Agustin places "an emphasis on Roda elegance, well handled oak and freshness." So much more on the rich, intense small black fruit side. Sweet small berries with intensely creamy flavour and texture. Fine, chocolaty tannins and sweet acidity complete a svelte and delicious picture. Great Ribera del Duero and though there are no UK stockists of the 2013 at time of writing, 2010 and 2011 is quite widely available.
(2018) Joven indicates a young wine, with minimum or zero oak ageing. As far as I can see this is 100% Tempranillo from the premium Ribera del Duero appellation, the nose bright and certainly fruit-forward, lightly herbal nuances to crisp blackcurrent fruit. In the mouth it is savoury and certainly fresh with a rustic bite of tannin and plenty of tangy cherry-pit acidity, just some spice into the finish. It could do with a bit more fruit density.
(2018) With 14.5% alcohol and a minimum of 18 months in new French oak barriques, this 100% Tempranillo red is given a bit of real welly, rich, deep and overflowing with black fruit and creamy oak notes on the nose, the palate too is a symphony of chocolate, creamy blackcurrant and swirling smokiness. It's substantial OK, with ripe but fairly blocky tannins, but a nice cherry acid does add a little light and air. Long, spicy and fruity, it's big in scale, still youthful and tight, and very well done of its style.
(2018) The largest production red wine in the Loess portfolio, with 50,000 bottles, but still with all of the Tinta del Pais (Tempranillo) from their own vineyards. It spends nine months in lightly-toasted French oak, and the nose is very much about tight, glossy, black plum and damson fruit, a touch of fine graphite character, a touch of balsamic character. In the mouth it is firm, both fruit, and the tannin/acid framework, and finishes just a touch more harshly than I'd ideally like.