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Spain Red Wines

Spain Red Wines

Spain Red Wines

Spanish wines shouldn’t be overlooked under any circumstances, as there are plenty of extraordinary wines coming from this country. There are also lots of grape varietals grown all over Spain. Some of the most gorgeous red varieties are the early-harvested Tempranillo, raspberry-flavored Garnacha, Bobal, Monastrell, as well as Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, and Merlot.
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2020 celler del roure safra Spain Red

The fruit for Safrà is grown biodynamically at 600m on sandy soils in Finca Els Corrals, mainly from 20- to 40-year-old Mandó vines harvested before fully mature, with about 15% of Garnacha Tintorera in the blend. Produced by owner Pablo Calatayud and winemaker Javier Revert, the wine was vinified in stainless steel using indigenous yeasts, with one third of the fruit in whole bunches. This was followed by six months’ maturation in earthenware jars. Sarah Jane Evans MW: Earthy, winey aromas – a clear expression of the variety. Refreshing notes of dark plum and cherry, with light citrus. Long, intense finish. An original. Christine Allen: Redcurrant, fresh cherry and high-tone florals on the nose. Lingering spiced fruit and a floral finish. A stunning example of what Valencia can do. Beth Willard: Enticing chalky, creamy milk chocolate and raspberry aromas. Pretty floral character, with rose petal, sweet fruit and ripe tannins. Very fresh and drinkable.Decanter | 95 DECThey consider 2020 Safrà the more balanced vintage to date, with the help of the Arcos structure, which makes it longer and more complex. It’s 70% Mandó and 30% Arcos that fermented in stainless steel vats with 30% full clusters and indigenous yeasts and matured in 2,600-liter tinaja for six months. It has 13% alcohol and a pH of 3.45. It’s juicy, floral, tasty and fresh, with very fine tannins and a long, focused finish. The combination of Mandó and Arcos works quite well; the blend is serious, with structure keeping the brightness. All of these wines are incredible values. 20,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in July 2021.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94+ RP

95
DEC
As low as $19.99
2020 clos i terrasses clos erasmus Spain Red

The still young and primary 2020 Clos Erasmus feels very floral and ethereal (within Priorat and Clos Erasmus); it’s a fresher and lighter expression but without being weak. It’s still a baby that needs to burn the baby fat (there are still some lactic notes from the malolactic in barrel). The wine is always around 3.2 or 3.3 pH and has some 15% to 15.5% alcohol, but the sensation this year is of a much fresher, more balanced and elegant wine. This should make an elegant bottle of mature Priorat with a decade in bottle, and I guess it will be long lived. Glorian mentioned that a small lot that normally goes to Laurel was added to the blend of Erasmus, resulting in a lot of added freshness and a note of orange blossom, which makes sense to me with the floral character of the wines and the extra freshness I perceived. This is really beautiful. It’s a very special vintage of Erasmus that unfurls incredible complexity and tantalizing aromas with time in the glass—blood orange (talk about freshness!), curry and cassis. It has great purity, complexity, elegance and finesse... A very different Clos Erasmus. Bravo! There are some 3,600 bottles. It was bottled in May 2022.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 100 RP

100
RP
As low as $699.00
2020 clos i terrasses laurel Spain Red

2020 was a challenging year that gave them a lot of work in the vineyard, but it it paid off. The 2020 Laurel feels very elegant, balanced and fresh, a little lighter perhaps, with perfectly ripe tannins, a little in line with 2016 or 2013. It might be a little unusual for the house style or perhaps a slight change, as they are gradually going for softer vinifications; you don’t really need to extract in Priorat, because the wines are powerful enough on their own. It’s still extremely young and has a lactic touch (that blows off with a bit of time in the glass); it was only bottled at the end of May 2022, three months before I tasted it. Even if it’s the second wine here, it’s a wine that needs a little bit of time and improves in the bottle. Having said that, the 2020s feel more open, expressive and approachable than the 2019s, which are more tannic and powerful while the 2020s feel a little more Burgundian if you like. This has to be one of the finest vintages of Laurel so far. After some time in the glass, the aromatics of the Syrah (which was perhaps a little more this year, some 12% versus 8% in 2019) made an appearance—violets, smoked bacon. Daphne Glorian told me that everything was easy, that the wine was expressive and open from day one and that the fermentations were smooth. There are some 19,000 bottles of this.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 96 RP

96
RP
As low as $67.99
2020 dominio del aguila picaro del aguila vinas viejas Spain Red

The juicy, velvety and aromatic red 2020 Pícaro del Águila Tinto is fine-boned and quite faithfully represents what they want to express with this cuvée; it’s very tasty and has some chalkiness (perhaps through less ripeness than in years like 2018) with 14% alcohol and mellow acidity. The nose reveals some Côte-Rôtie-like notes of smoked meat and violets. 2020 delivered a good crop of healthy grapes that produced the finest wine to date for this bottling. This is superb, elegant and powerful, with everything in place (seems to be the signature of 2020) and perfectly integrated oak. 71,382 bottles and 1,979 magnums produced. It was bottled in September 2021.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RP

95
RP
As low as $38.99
2020 emilio moro malleolus Spain Red

Dark ruby violet-colored in the glass, this wine has enticing aromas of orange peel, milk chocolate and black raspberry. Plush tannins and bright acidity wake up your mouth to flavors of ripe cherry, cranberry, anise frond and dried lavender.Wine Enthusiast | 97 WEA fragrant version, with black licorice and toast accents to the baked cassis and blackberry fruit flavors. Rich and expressive, without being weighty, layering the tang of balsamico acidity and supple tannins with the expressive profile. Reveals a waft of medicinal herbs on the finish. Drink now through 2028. 20,000 cases made, 7,500 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 92 WSDusted oak spices with a mixture of tarry black plums and blue fruit. Anise and minty chocolate, too. Full-bodied on the palate with very tight but creamy tannins and a long, spicy finish. Drinkable now if you decant, but much better in two to three years.James Suckling | 92 JS

97
WE
As low as $47.95
2020 hacienda lopez de haro tempranillo Spain Red
As low as $12.99
2020 pingus Spain Red

The bottled 2020 Pingus has settled, and the strong Mediterranean accent that was quite strong early on seems to have calmed down. The wine shows more of the serious Pingus character and is harmonious, balanced and elegant, perhaps because of the time it spent in oak vat (starting this year, it is not only in barrique). It feels very complete and intense but without weight or heaviness, and the fruit shows very clean and focused. Peter Sisseck compared it with the 2000, a wine that for him transcends the vintage; it showcases the balance (wines like 1996, 2000, 2012, 2016 and 2018). The quality of the tannins is stunning, which make the wine very elegant and balanced, and it has good freshness (even some red fruit!). This is exceptionally good, but somehow my heart didn’t beat like with the wines he compared them with... 7,500 bottles were filled in July 2022.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 99 RPIntense yet subtle aromas of crushed stone, dried violets and sweet berries such as blackberries. Ink undertones. Full-bodied and very powerful with black chocolate, hazelnut and lovely tannins that go on for minutes. Bitter chocolate at the end with hints of coffee. Harmonious and structured. Needs four to five years to open, but will last beautifully for decades. Try after 2027.James Suckling | 98 JSA harmonious, medium- to full-bodied red, with pleasing tension and drive as well as depth to the flavors of ripe black raspberry and black plum fruit, with tea leaf, iron and smoke, white pepper and bay leaf notes. There’s a sense of effortless grace to this wine until firm, fine tannins emerge on the chalky finish -- a reminder of its quiet power. Drink now through 2033. 600 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WS

99
RP
As low as $1,149.00
2020 sierra de tolono rioja tinto Spain Red

The entry-level red 2020 Sierra de Toloño was produced with Tempranillo from Rivas de Tereso, fresh and energetic, representing the high-altitude vineyards produced in a simple way. It has 13.5% alcohol and a medium body with good freshness, clean berry flavors, vibrant acidity and fine tannins. 35,000 bottles produced, the largest production by far. It was bottled in July 2021 after eight months in neutral barrels.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 91 RP

91
RP
As low as $16.99
2020 vina zorzal garnacha Spanish Red

The incredibly young and juicy 2020 Garnacha was produced with grapes from different villages, Corella, Cintruénigo, Fitero and Lerga, hence a regional blend that for the first time contains grapes from the cooler Lerga that adds lower pH, more freshness and complexity to the blend. They do a soft extraction in stainless steel using 20% full clusters and indigenous yeasts, achieving a wine with moderate alcohol (13.47%) and good freshness (pH 3.47). I felt like the wine had gone one step up in complexity and depth from the previous vintage; it’s precise, harmonious, elegant and nuanced and keeps varietal purity. It’s medium-bodied and has very fine tannins with herbal freshness, reminiscent of acid berries and bay leaf. This is a steal! One to buy by the case... 137,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in February 2021.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 92 RP

92
RP
As low as $17.99
2021 artadi rioja vina el pison Spain Red

Reductive at first before deep aromas emerge of mineral, fine herbs, white pepper, oyster shells, hibiscus, freshly chopped blueberries and forest berries. Really dissolved and transparent on the palate with great tension and immaculate tannins. Persistent, mineral-driven finish. Already approachable now but this has impeccable balance, allowing it to age effortlessly. Better give it two years to get rid of the reduction.James Suckling | 100 JSThe 2021 Viña El Pisón had a similar élevage as the other wines, as they do not use the new barrels in the top wines like they used to do in the past; they try to have similar percentage of new barrels in all the wines. This is silky, a little riper and more aromatic than the 2020 and with a very long aftertaste. The wine is not oaky at all; it’s quite fruit-driven, and as usually happens with this wine, it’s quite austere, a little closed and backward. And despite its concentration and power, it doesn’t seem to weigh heavy. Persistent. It’s been in tank since June 2021 after it finished malolactic fermentation in barrel.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95-97 RP

100
JS
As low as $299.00
2021 bodegas y vinedos ponce bobal clos lojen Spain Red

Juan António Ponce told me 2021 is one of those vintages when you realize in wine you never know everything... He thinks the 2021 Clos Lojen is the most complete vintage ever for this wine, with unusual freshness (despite "normal" parameters like a pH of 3.7 and five grams of acidity) and 12% alcohol. It’s intense and has varietal Bobal typicity with good weight. It fermented in 4,500-liter oak vats with 100% full clusters and indigenous yeasts and matured in 4,500-, 10,000- and 15,000-liter French oak vats for six months. This is sharp and austere, with lower alcohol and is more mineral than fruit-driven. Incredible value. 60,000 bottles produced.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 93 RPThis is a bobal with clarity and silken length, even as its scent fills the head with purple grape skins and bergamot spice. Friendly, in search of a chill for a summer night, this is a by-the-case buy.Wine & Spirits Magazine | 90 W&S

93
RP
As low as $12.99
2021 casa castillo las gravas Spain Red

The 2021 Las Gravas contains grapes from a vineyard planted in 2006 (that already contributed to the 2020), and it has given the wine a fine-boned profile, with more freshness and varietal Monastrell notes, a rustic-elegant feeling. It keeps the incredible quality level of the 2020, with Jumilla typicity; it’s Mediterranean, powerful and energetic, with balanced 15% alcohol and a chalky, rocky, stony sensation in the finish. This always contains some 8% to 12% Garnacha. Production has grown to 37,905 (numbered) bottles. It was bottled in June 2023, as they did a longer élevage. This matured 100% in oak foudre; they abandoned the 500-liter barrels for this wine and for Pie Franco.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 98 RP

98
RP
As low as $64.99
2021 cvne bela ribera del duero Spain Red

The bread-and-butter wine here is the 2021 Bela, produced with Tempranillo from the village of Villalba de Duero (mentioned on the label), from sandy and clay rich soils on limestone mother rock that delivers powerful but not overripe wines with a short-ish élevage to achieve a fine-boned and fresh wine. The grapes were picked between October 1st and 25th, mostly Tempranillo but some 5% Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot too, and it matured in French oak barrels for nine months. The wine has 14.3% alcohol, a pH of 3.57 and close to five grams of acidity, textbook parameters from the zone and textbook profile of classical Ribera; it’s ripe without excess, with very integrated oak and a velvety palate with silky tannins. It reminds me of the historical wines from the early 1990s, Valribeño and so on, with some rusticity but very honest and characterful. With time in the glass, it develops a precise note of licorice intermixed with berry fruit and some spices and herbs. They feel this is the wine they wanted to produce from the beginning; they consider it their best vintage to date irrespective of the style of the year, with 2019 more powerful, 2020 more elegant and this 2021 something in between. 85,000 bottles produced. It was bottled in July 2022.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RP

92
RP
As low as $17.99
2021 Luna Beberide Mencia Paixar

The vino de paraje from A Serra in Dragonte 2021 Paixar is as good as ever, with the austerity of the slate slopes and the old vines that deliver low yields of concentrated and characterful grapes. It has a moderate 13.5% alcohol and a very fresh sensation on the palate beyond analysis. The vineyards are in the process to obtain organic certification. 6,500 bottles produced. This is one of the most elegant vintages for this wine.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RPAs I have mentioned in the past, Paixar is Luna Beberide’s oldest vine cuvée, with these Mencía vines ranging from eighty-five to one hundred years of age! The vineyard is a south-facing hillside of weathered slate and the wine is now raised entirely in one wine casks during its élevage. The 2021 Paixar is a superb wine in the making, delivering a complex aromatic constellation of black raspberries, graphite, pomegranate, tree bark, grilled meats, a gorgeous base of slate minerality, espresso, woodsmoke and a touch of cedary oak. On the palate the wine is deep, full-bodied and very elegant on the attack, with a superb core of black fruit, impressive transparency and grip, ripe, fine-grained tannins and impeccable balance on the long, focused and complex finish. This is so well-balanced that it is not hard to drink today, but in reality, this is still a young wine and it is infanticide to even contemplate drinking it now, as there is so much more to unfold here with some extended cellaring. This may well be the finest young wine I have yet tasted from Luna Beberide, and I have been a fan of this fine Bierzo estate for a decade now! (Drink between 2031 - 2075)John Gilman | 95 JGA firm, medium-bodied red, with an herbaceous overtone of Mediterranean scrub and crushed pine accenting flavors of tangy blackberry and black plum as well as mineral and spice undertones. Fragrant on the fresh finish, with lingering floral herb and spice notes. Best from 2025 through 2033. 700 cases made, 175 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 92 WS

97
RP
As low as $32.99
2021 Raul Perez La Vizcaina La Vitoriana

I love the 2021 La Vizcaína La Vitoriana, where they use the westernmost part of the vineyard with more sand in the soils, mostly north facing. It’s a wine with a floral nose that is aromatic and perfumed, elegant but with clout, with concentration and power. They have been picking earlier and earlier, lowering the alcohol, and they feel more comfortable below 13%; they removed the rusticity and extraction, and the wine is more elegant than ever. It reminds me of the 2018, with similar a profile of freshness. They produced around 5,000 liters from the one+ hectare they have here.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RP

97
RP
As low as $42.99
2021 sierra de tolono la dula garnacha de altura Spain Red

This is the fourth vintage of Sandra Bravo’s brilliant old-vine Garnacha from Rivas de Tereso and it’s every bit as good as its predecessors. Aged in 300-litre clay amphoras, it’s wonderfully perfumed and intense, with engaging bramble and red cherry fruit sweetness, tannins and a long, energetic palate. 2023-32Tim Atkin | 96 TA

96
TA
As low as $25.99
2021 Vina Zorzal Malayeto

”This Garnacha is part of Zorzal’s series of terroir-focused wines. Coming from Fitero, a village at the base of the mountains in the south of Navarra that separate the region from La Rioja, the 40-year-old vines are grown at 520m on rocky soils on limestone and clay. The wine is defined by an elegant and precise structure but does not lack any intensity with blackberry fruit, black pepper and a little mint. With just enough tannic grip, it is profound yet full of energy and drive.Tim Atkin | 97 TAA longtime favorite of mine and still a bargain, the 2021 Malayeto is always one of the most elegant and finest wines from Zorzal. It comes from 2.39 hectares of vines that are now 43 years old, planted at 520 meters altitude on limestone-rich soils in the village of Fitero, on the same slope as their Corral de los Altos. It fermented in a combination of stainless steel and concrete and matured in 12 used 500-liter barrels and one 4,000-liter oak foudre for one year. It has 13.45% alcohol and is medium-bodied with great balance, finesse, freshness and acidity. It has good depth and a sense of good ripeness (riper than Corral de los Altos this year!). There is great consistency in this vineyard, and this wine is serious, precise and long. 13,300 bottles produced. It was bottled in February 2023.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 94 RPMalayeto is Viña Zorzal’s single vineyard bottling of Garnacha, with these vines thirty-five years of age. The wine is fermented with native yeasts and raised for nine months in three hundred liter, used barrels, prior to racking into large foudres for a final two months of élevage. The 2021 Malayeto comes in at fourteen percent alcohol and delivers a lovely aromatic constellation of raspberries, fruitcake, pepper, chalky soil tones, garrigue, a nice touch of meatiness and a gentle topnote of distant bonfire. On the palate the wine is bright, full-bodied and ripely tannic, with fine focus and grip, a good core of red fruit and soil, lovely balance and a long, youthfully complex finish. Unlike the regular bottle of Garnacha from Viña Zorzal, the Malayeto will need some time in the cellar to soften up its tannins a bit before it drinks with generosity. (Drink between 2031 - 2065)John Gilman | 91 JG

97
TA
As low as $19.99
2022 Merayo Mencia

The young unoaked Mencía, the eponymous 2022 Merayo is varietal and juicy, with notes of licorice, wild berries, flowers and herbs. It has a moderate 13.28% alcohol and a velvety mouthfeel. It’s from old vines and was fermented in stainless steel with indigenous yeasts and kept in tank for two to three months. 85,000 bottles produced. It was bottled unoaked in March 2023.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 91 RPFresh, fragrant nose of red berries, sour cherries and some stemmy herbs. This is juicy and medium-bodied on the palate with a vibrant, crunchy feel to the simple red berry fruit. Juicy and easy finish. Drink now.James Suckling | 90 JS

91
RP
As low as $12.99
n/v murrieta rioja riserva vertical collection (2012-2017) Spain Red
As low as $295.00

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