2015 Rivas de Tereso Sierra de Toloño
The red 2015 Rivas de Tereso will be the last vintage with that name (the name of the village where the majority of vineyards are located). It will be called Camino de Santa Cruz from the 2016 vintage onward. This was the first vineyard-designated wine, from very shallow soils at high altitude. It fermented in amphorae to preserve freshness and then aged in 500-liter oak barrels for one year. There is good ripeness of fruit with an earthy and mineral touch plus aromas of herbs and wild flowers, a medium-bodied palate with dusty, chalky tannins and a very tasty finish. Drinking range: 2018 - 2023 Rating: 92+ Luis Gutierrez, www.robertparker.com (Feb 2018)
*Case price: Mix any 12 bottles of wine or 6 bottles of Champagne, Spirits or Fortified to get the 'case price' for each bottle.
Single vineyard at 700 m, fermented in amphora. Rich and, oddly enough, smells a bit more mainstream than the cheaper version. Certainly rich and flattering but I think I prefer the energy of the cheaper one. Drinking range: 2018 - 2025 Rating: 16.5 Jancis Robinson MW OBE - www.JancisRobinson.com (Oct 2017)
Sierra de Toloño
Sandra Bravo comes from Rioja, and has returned there to start this project. 2012 was the first vintage. Sandra has trained in Bordeaux, Chianti, Marlborough, California, and is still currently winemaker for one othe bigger producers in Priorat. She has returned home to make a Rioja which reflects the land and climate of this particular corner of Rioja Alavesa. The wine comes from old goblet trained Tempranillo vines grown on calcareous clay are at 650m in Labastida - one of the highest vineyards of the Rioja region. The mountains of the Sierra de Toloño protect the vines from northerly winds and create a special microclimate, cold because it is so high, but dry with the Mediterranean influence despite being so far north. All this is perfect for the grapes to ripen fully over a long time in the bright light but relatively cool temperatures - the ripeness comes slowly, retaining natural acidity. The grapes are harvested into 15kg boxes, sorted at the vine, and taken to the winery in Laguardia. Here Sandra does a very conservative vinification, with a cold soak to start with to preserve the freshness of the fruit, and then only a gentle pigeage. After the vinification the wine is aged just six months in French oak barrels, and bottled without fineing of filtration. For the 2013 Sandra is delighted to have some amphorae, and will make a wine with no oak at all, aged just in these.
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