Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 60

YEAR'S BEST RIBERA DEL DUERO
92 | Emilio Moro

$150

2015 Ribera del Duero Malleolus de
Valderramiro ^ Here's a wine to tamp a chocolate craving, even as it still sends a message
from its terroir. This taster thought it was
Pesquera, from Alejandro Hernandez. In
fact, it turned out to be Valderramiro, from
a parcel of vines in Pesquera de Duero looking toward the afternoon sun, the Moro family's oldest block, planted in 1924 in clay soils.
And perhaps it is that particular combination
of ancient vines and clay soils that speaks of
the place: a sharp edge to the grape-skin tannins to cut through the chocolate richness of
oak aging, the meeting of balsamic volatility
and violet scents. As ripe as it may be, the
wine is zesty, with a long life ahead. ¤ USA Wine
West, Sausalito, CA
276986

92 | Monteabellón

$26

2016 Ribera del Duero Crianza 14 Meses ^
Tempranillo One Spanish taster described
the violet floral scents of this wine, then
said, "It seems commercial." Asked why, he
responded, "It's so kind of perfect." What
to others seemed sweet and floral, to me
seemed savory and sophisticated, with the
salty tang of gamey meats and the spice of
cayenne pepper in Mexican chocolate. The
flavors are long, brisk and intense, a floral
tempranillo from estate vineyards on gravelly sands, surrounding the town of Nava de
Roa. ¤ Europvin USA, Van Nuys, CA
273139

92 | Bodegas Peñafiel

$29

2016 Ribera del Duero Miros de Ribera
Crianza ^ All about oak intensity and blackfruit power, this is a superconcentrated
Ribera del Duero. There's a needle-like spice
to the fruit, like peppercorn-studded beef,
creating a savory beef-jerky impression. The
dark fruit lasts past the oak, suggesting this
will benefit from bottle age. (W&S 10/19) ¤
Wine Trust Cellars, Southbury, CT
276935

92 | Hermanos
	 Pérez Pascuas

$116

92 | Dominio de Pingus

$100

2012 Ribera del Duero Gran Reserva Viña
Pedrosa ^ Based in Pedrosa de Duero, northwest of Roa, the Pérez Pascuas family produces estate-grown wines from their 333
acres of vines. This gran reserva includes 10
percent cabernet sauvignon, adding a fragrant, herbal note to the cool, sleek fruit.
Age lends an autumnal tone to the blueberry
notes and gamey scents. It's generous, supple
and clean. ¤ Think Global, Santa Barbara, CA
277343
2017 Ribera del Duero Flor de Pingus ^ A
youthful 2017 that's both bright and rich,
60

WINE & SPIRITS

JUNE 2020

Flor de Pingus is a selection from vineyards
around the town of La Horra. The fruit is
dark, the tannins warm, with chocolate and
butterscotch notes. It's a heady Ribera del
Duero lifted by floral notes. ¤ The Rare Wine
Co., Brisbane, CA
277094

92 | De Restia

$20

92 | Torremorón

$17

2015 Ribera del Duero de Restia ^ Resalte
de Peñafiel produces this wine for the Restivo family, who run Biagio Cru and Estate
Wines; Restia was the family name before
their ancestors left Spain for Southern Italy.
The wine is a blend of fruit from the sandy
soils of Padilla de Duero and the limestone
soils of Peñafiel. The hot, dry season of 2015
created this powerful, black-fruited Ribera
del Duero, still presenting itself as a young
tough five years out. There's a tense, floral
beam of ripe red-currant flavor emerging
from the darkness, taking the rusticity and
tannic grip toward a richer future. ¤ Biagio Cru
and Estate Wines, New Hyde Park, NY
276893
2018 Ribera del Duero Tempranillo (Best
Buy) ^ The high altitudes and old vines of
north-central Ribera del Duero are famed
for producing ambitious, collectible reds.
So it's rare to find that great fruit presented
unadorned, as it is here, in this wine from
Quintanamanvirgo, a town with centenarian vines and fewer than 100 people, most
of whom work in these vineyards planted in
limestone and sand, at an elevation of 2,700
feet. Fernando de la Cal makes the wine in
stainless steel with gentle extraction, capturing the freshness of the vineyards' cold nights
in the fragrant strawberry and ripe-plum flavors. It's lean and naked, but the wine is still
supple and bold. Decant a bottle and you
may end up buying a case. ¤ Olé & Obrigado
Imports, New Rochelle, NY
277088

92 | Vega-Sicilia

$110

2016 Ribera del Duero Alión ^ AliÓn is VegaSicilia's nod to modernity. It starts with tinto
fino that grows on the plateau between the
road and the river, ferments in oak vats,
then ages in new French oak barrels. In
2016, those new barrels amplified the wine's
dark plum power, taking the texture to satin
smoothness while the freshness sustains a
presence equal to the smoky umami of the
tannins. Those elements are balanced, if
youthfully disparate, needing time in bottle
for the fruit and structure to knit. ¤ Europvin
USA, Van Nuys, CA
277334

92 | Goyo García Viadero

$77

91 | Antídoto

$22

91 | Avelino Vegas

$75

2015 Ribera del Duero Finca el Peruco ^ El
Peruco is one of the three vineyards Goyo
García Viadero purchased when he returned
to his native Ribera del Duero in 2003, setting out to make wines that reflected the history of the region and its soils rather than
making modern blockbuster reds. This vineyard, in Anguix, is on a plateau at 3,000 feet
in altitude, the vines rooted in the sandy soils
for more than 100 years. About 15 percent
of those vines are albillo, interplanted with
the tempranillo, their fruit harvested and
fermented together, the wine made without
any additions-there is no sulfur added-
and aged in old French oak barrels in a deep
stone cellar for three years. García Viadero
believes the albillo at Peruco softens the tannins and enhances the saltiness of the wine.
His 2015 is a cool, satin-textured blanket of
tart black fruit that lifts to reveal high-toned
floral scents and spice. There's some bitterness, a fresh herbal note of mustard greens,
that may be the saltiness he references, as
that aspect of the wine is an enhancement to
food, especially roast baby lamb. ¤ José Pastor
Selections, Fairfax, CA
277341
2018 Ribera del Duero ^ Bertrand Sourdais hails from a wine family in Chinon, in
France's Loire Valley. He's been fascinated
by the pre-phylloxera vineyards of Atauta, a
town in Soría, in the eastern reaches of the
DO, since he began working here in 2000.
This is his high-altitude "antidote" to the
ambitiously extracted wines of Ribera del
Duero. It's all about ripe black currants
and the sweetness of the earth, a vibrant,
silken and delicious young red. One panelist described a saltiness, like pork while it's
curing, and Antídoto is ready for well-cured
chorizo. ¤ The Rare Wine Co., Brisbane, CA
277178
2015 Ribera del Duero 100 Aniversario ^
Named in tribute to the founder of this family bodega, this wine grows at parcels in La
Aguilera, where the vines are more than 80
years old. The grapes follow gravity through
stainless steel fermenters shaped like cones
cut off at the top, then into a combination
of French oak barrels and concrete eggs for
malolactic conversion and aging. The wine
delivers a supple intensity: the umami flavors of a gamey pork broth, a hint of hoisin
or soy, a dark-berried fruit-skin tone. Tasting coordinator Corey Warren described
the combination as "unique and well put
together, unusual but self-assured." ¤ Classic
Wines, Stamford, CT



Wine & Spirits - June 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Wine & Spirits - June 2020

Contents
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover1
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover2
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - 1
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Contents
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Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover3
Wine & Spirits - June 2020 - Cover4
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