(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.
(2018) The 12 months in new French oak certainly marks this aromatically, much more so than the 'Inspiration' cuvée, but it's a lovely quality of cedary, Sandalwood and plump, glossy black fruit, that is bold, spicy but fruit-filled and appealing. The palate has a beautiful sweetness and ripeness of plump, succulent black fruits, a sheen of creamy oak overlaid, and a nice sense of juiciness thanks to tight tannins and a balanced acidity. This is certainly more sleek than the 'Inspiration', not to obvious as the 'Collection', and is arguably my favourite of the three reds. Price is approximate: it's €16.50 shipped from Spain.
(2017) This handsomely packaged Ribera del Duero certainly looks like more than £7's worth. A 'Roble', so given only a short period in oak barrels, it is 100% Tempranillo made by Bodegas Portia, owned by Rioja's Faustino, who I visited a few years ago at the opening of their stunning winery. Dark and saturated purple, there's a sheen of cocoa and mocha coffee to dark, glossy black fruit. On the palate a welterweight of black plum, damson and blueberry is bittersweet, with the ripe and creamy fruit set against a firm, spicy framework of tannin and cherry-skin acidity. Not shy on charry oak, but very impressive at this price I must say.
(2015) Getting a wine on the shelves from the pricy Ribera del Duero is tricky, but getting such a good one must be trickier still. Liquorice, charcoal and smokiness, the fruit in the blackberry spectrum, but it is those dark notes that dominate. In the mouth this has plenty of dusty, dry tannins, but the intrinsic fruit depth is there, and the balance is good, giving this decent fruity and spicy length.
(2015) This is 100% Tempranillo, from near the town of Pesquera in Ribera del Duero, just lightly oaked to preserve its freshness from this organic estate. There's a very refined tobacco, ash and briar note at first, elegant and gently lifted, though a weight of blackberry fruit begins to assert. In the mouth that refined, cedary, gently olive-like quality marries with the sweet black fruits, a delightful freshness from crisp, black cherry-skin acidity and tight tannins, really extends the finish. Lovely, cool and sophisticated.
(2014) With 14.5% alcohol, and as well as Tempranillo this has 7% Cabernet Sauvignon and 2% Merlot in the blend. Everything is selected via a sorting table, and the wine spends 16 months in a combination of French oak (30% new) and American oak (60% new). Dustiness and tobacco notes, a touch of eucalyptus. Tight black fruit and the spice is there. Flooded with creamy black fruit, edgy and has a big dense stripe of charry oak and tannin gives this huge grip against the smooth sweet density of the fruit. A powerful wine with body and structure to age.