December 2016 Selection

A meander along the Duero

December 2016 Selection

Astrales 2013 (2 bottles)
Elías Mora Crianza 2012 (2 bottles)
Rolland & Galarreta Rueda 2014 (2 bottles)

Normal retail price: £96.80
Club Discount Price: £81.17
You save: £15.63 (16.14%)

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About this selection...

This Christmas we're proposing a wander through some of the most well-respected regions of Castile and León. Such a momentous time of the year definitely deserves special wines; our tables are covered with all sorts of elaborate dishes and our glasses need to complement these tasty treats. During our particular meander along the River Duero we'll be visiting three of the Spanish wine scene's most highly-regarded denominations of origin: Ribera del Duero, Toro and Rueda.

Anguix delivers a wine whose fame is increasing year by year, despite its short lifespan so far: the Astrales 2013. It's a powerful and complex Ribera red, finely crafted by Eduardo García, son of the legendary Mariano García. You'll find the Elías Mora Crianza 2012, a Toro red that's as intense as it is elegant, enchanting with the sweetness of its tannins and silkiness of its touch. Both wines will pair up to perfection with meat dishes and more substantial casseroles. Valladolid sees the production of one of the most fascinating and distinguished Verdejo wines in the whole Rueda DO: the Rolland & Galarreta Rueda 2014. Only the wide-ranging expertise of someone like Michel Rolland could redefine the limits of expression of the region's star varietal. His white wine is tremendously versatile and will work excellently with white meats as well as fish or shellfish.

Hoping you enjoy to the full these wines and your Christmas repasts, the Vinissimus team would like to wish you a very merry festive season.

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Astrales 2013 (2 bottles)

Red Crianza. Bodega Los Astrales Ribera del Duero, Spain Tempranillo

Bottle: £18.83 club members / £22.48 non-members

The essence of Astrales derives from the roots of the 25 to 80 year-old vines which are deeply rooted in Anguix's calcareous-clay soils. Distributed among small parcels planted in bush formation, the vines must strive hard to achieve adequate yields, battling against the wind, frosts and drought. No herbicides are used and sulphur treatments are kept to a minimum, with the aim of respecting the land's biodiversity.

The winery works with native yeasts and, just as in the field, the intention is to intervene only when considered necessary. Macerations are not meant to be overly long and the plan is for gravity to do the majority of the work. 30% of the casks are renewed annually, so that the oak doesn't have too great an influence on the wine, and despite its 18 months in barrel, the end result is a very well-balanced wine from start to finish.

Behind a very intense depth, the Astrales conceals some delicate aromas of black plums and Picota cherries emerging on a background of robust minerality and a charming balsamic freshness. Woodland blackberries, the odd lactic note and definitely toasty notes from the oak in the form of vanilla and coffee. On the palate, the tannin-acidity amplifies the silky body brimming with character. Mediterranean bushes, ink, cocoa..., its aromatic array seems endless. It takes its leave with the right amount of dryness so as to be elegant and a fruit content so high it lingers long in the memory.

Braised vegetables / lamb ribs

  • Wine Tasting Notes:
    • Colour
      Cherry red / with a garnet rim
    • Bouquet
      Plums / cherries / vanilla / toasty notes / mineral / spices / cocoa
    • Palate
      With body / silky / rich / marked tannins
  • Alcohol content: 14,5%
  • Optimum serving temperature: 16ºC
  • Drink now or keep until 2022.

Astrales 2013
Front and back

Elías Mora Crianza 2012 (2 bottles)

Red Crianza. Bodegas Elías Mora Toro, Spain Tinta de Toro

Bottle: £10.96 club members / £13.09 non-members

This extraordinary red is made from grapes grown on old vines in the village of San Román de la Hornija. There, near to Villafranca de Duero, enjoying an inclement continental climate, the plants in bush form deliver Tinta de Toro at its very best. The grapes are harvested manually very early in the morning and once destalked, they ferment for about 20 days. Immediately afterwards the process of rounding off the wine takes place in large American and French oak barrels. After a brief period of reposing in bottle, the Elías Mora Crianza is released onto the market, brimming with the essence of its land of origin, bringing very much to the fore the denomination's enormous potential and that of the Tinta de Toro variety.

On uncorking the bottle, we find an immense red that's a lovely purple colour, and combines the virtues of traditional Toro DO wines with the more positive characteristics of the new Castilian reds. It has body and aromatic intensity, but freshness and acidity too; it flows and expands as it does so. On the nose, mineral and ink notes can be discerned, the well-ripened black fruit (although some red fruit too) and the fine spices arising from its oak ageing. On the palate, it's pure silk, equally delicate and intense; certainly a Toro, and among the finest. Cocoa, dried orange peel, liquorice... It begins taking its leave at a slow pace, firmly and furtively, and moves off elegantly, leaving behind it a protracted hint of ripe fruit and blue flowers.

Duck with red fruits / feathered game / mushrooms

  • Alcohol content: 15,0%
  • Optimum serving temperature: 16ºC
  • Drink now or keep until 2021.

Elías Mora Crianza 2012
Front and back

Rolland & Galarreta Rueda 2014 (2 bottles)

Barrel Aged white. R&G Rolland Galarreta Rueda, Spain Verdejo

Bottle: £10.81 club members / £12.83 non-members

This wine forms part of the Rolland & Galarreta project, a venture which unites two wine cultures: the French and Spanish. Consequently, the expertise of the famous and highly-regarded French winemaker, Michel Rolland, a consultant for some of the world's most reputable wineries, has joined together with the experience of the founder of Araex & Spanish Fine Wines, Javier Galarreta, one of the leading names in business of Spanish wine exports.

In the making of their Verdejo in Rueda, Rolland and Galarreta have been able to count on the grapes and installations of the Val de Vid winery in Valladolid. There, the must undergoes a cold maceration with the grape skins in order to enhance the variety's characteristic aromas. After that, fermentation takes place at 16º C, with the clear objective of conserving the grape's basic freshness. Contact with its lees confers structure and volume on the palate, and the small percentage of wine (30%) that matures in new barrels from Saury (France) for two months is blended with the rest to endow profundity and complexity to the final product, an atypical and fascinating Verdejo that proves it's still possible to make very individual wines in the Rueda DO.

Its golden colour indicates a certain evolution, whilst its nose exhibits a complete palette of aromas: flower petals (jasmine and orange blossom), quince, green melon... On the palate, it's creamy and fresh, enveloping and smooth. With due patience and concentration, we can just about accept there's a Verdejo wine in front of us, yet it's so unlike the more usual offerings it's not easy; it attains a level of complexity rarely found which makes it a special wine, capable of accompanying any number of dishes and providing a pleasant surprise for new recruits and expert tasters alike.

Spicy fish / washed-rind cheeses / meats with creamy sauces

  • Alcohol content: 13,5%
  • Optimum serving temperature: 8ºC
  • Drink now or keep until 2020.

Rolland & Galarreta Rueda 2014
Front and back

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